Australia's Ellyse Perry, left, and teammate Jessica Cameron celebrate their win over England in the ICC Women's Twenty20 Cricket World Cup final match in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Sunday, April 6, 2014. Australia women won the match by six wickets.
Australia's Ellyse Perry, left, and teammate Jessica Cameron celebrate their win over England in the ICC Women's Twenty20 Cricket World Cup final match in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Sunday, April 6, 2014. Australia women won the match by six wickets. AP Photo - Aijaz Rahi

Ellyse Perry: a household sporting name at just 23

GLAMOUR sportswoman Ellyse Perry might be a household name, but she is also passionate about helping grassroots cricketers all over the country.

Perry, still only 23, has already achieved so much as a dual international in cricket and football.

She is a cricket world champion, and is the only woman to have represented Australia at a senior World Cup in two different sports.

Growing up with a bat and ball in her hand, and receiving a stack of support along the way, has only made her desire to help out young cricketers a strong one.

That's why she is an ambassador for the Commonwealth Bank's Grants for Grassroots program, which awards 90 cricket clubs with a cash grant of $1000, and equipment.

She spoke to APN Sports Reporter Josh Spasaro …

The Commonwealth Bank Cricket Club grants scheme that you are an ambassador for - how happy are you to be a face for it?

It's a wonderful initiative from my point of view.

When I grew up playing cricket I had so much fun - it was a wonderful time of my life.

And the grants are so easy to fill out.

Are time and money the biggest threats to cricket at grassroots level nowadays?

There are a lot of competing interests for kids out there today and we live in a fast-paced world.

To play cricket is a big commitment and it does take up a lot of time.

But it's such a social game which makes it so enjoyable.

These grants can make a difference to people out there struggling to afford to play.

What has (boyfriend and Brumbies star) Matt Toomua taught you about conducting yourself as a professional athlete?

He's fantastic with the way he approaches everything calmly, and he enjoys challenges.

We are both grateful to do things we love for a living.

Sport is a big part of our lives, but it isn't everything in our relationship.

We talk about a lot of other things outside of sport, and we just try to be supportive of each other.

Watching the football World Cup recently, did you watch it and think 'I wish that was me out there in the women's version'? (Perry has not been included in the Matildas' team recently due to coach Hesterine de Reus' hard-line stance that only fulltime footballers can be picked).

From my point of view I'm still playing (for Sydney FC).

I've played in a World Cup before and I'd love to be a part of the next World Cup in Canada next year.

Hopefully, I'll be invited to play again.

What allowed you to excel across both sports while growing up?

I just really enjoyed getting outdoors from a young age.

Bats and balls were always part of my weekends, and I'm grateful that the friends I hung around at school all had similar interests.

Do you pinch yourself at everything you've achieved so far, and the fact you're still only 23?

I'm so fortunate with the opportunities I've been given. I never set out to do what I've done, but I'm very grateful for everything.
 

To apply for a CommBank Cricket Club grant including Grants for Grassroots, Super Grant and a Club Empowerment Project, please visit www.commbank.com.au/cricket

Applications close on August 15.


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