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ODI series a perfect formula for Schutt

22 February 2019

Australian and Strikers pace bowler Megan Schutt

Megan Schutt is the first to admit she's not the most patient person, but the Australia spearhead will be working hard to rectify that during the Commonwealth Bank ODI Series against New Zealand.

The switch to the 50-over format is a welcome shift for Schutt after a summer that's seen Australia largely focused on the shortest form of the game, both at the T20 World Cup in the West Indies and on home shores in the Rebel WBBL.

The 26-year-old South Australian is currently the world's top-ranked T20 bowler, but Schutt says it's the 50-over game she favours. It's one she also excels at, sitting second in the ODI bowling charts behind Pakistan's Sana Mir.

"I'm ready to get back into ODI cricket," Schutt told cricket.com.au in the lead-up to Friday's opening ODI at the WACA Ground.

"It's my preferred format, I think I'm better at that than T20 cricket.

"I enjoy the time out there and we get to play on the WACA (on Friday) so that's pretty cool."

Bowling 10 overs instead of four won't be the only adjustment for Schutt, whose clever variations played a major part Australia's success at last November's T20 World Cup.

"For me this series, it's getting used to bowling more stock balls than slower balls or change ups," she explained.

"Patience isn't always my strength, so I think that'll be a good enough challenge for me out there.

"I get a bit ahead of myself too, I get excited and I want to change something even though doing the simple things are most effective in this format."

Likely to be tasked with the new ball on Friday, Schutt will quickly find herself bowling to two very familiar opponents in New Zealand top-order stars Suzie Bates and Sophie Devine, who play alongside Schutt at the Adelaide Strikers.

"I love and hate it," Schutt laughed when asked about taking on her WBBL teammates.

"I know how well they can hit that ball, we know each other inside out.

"There's advantages and disadvantages, but I adore the Strikers girls who play for the Kiwis.

"It's actually exciting to get out on the field and have a bit of banter."

With the Rose Bowl trophy up for grabs in the three-game series, which takes in matches in Perth, Adelaide and Melbourne, Schutt's attention will be firmly on helping Australia continue their 19-year ODI series winning streak against their trans-Tasman rivals.

Then, later this year, Australia's women will enter their busiest-ever period with an away Ashes series in June-July, tours against West Indies (away) and Sri Lanka (home), a standalone WBBL and the 2020 T20 World Cup on home soil, beginning February 21.

But before Schutt begins building up to those on-field challenges, she has one major life event to focus on once the Rose Bowl series wraps up in Melbourne on March 3 – namely, her impending nuptials, with the pace ace set to marry fiancée Jess Holyoake on March 30.

"We've got a six-week block off, which is the first time we've had that in one chunk," she said.

"I've got a wedding to plan and a honeymoon to go on. It's creeping up very quickly, we finish this tour then it's three-and-a-half weeks until we get married.

"So there's going to be some stuff to come home to (organise) … and making the payments, I'm getting ready to see that bank account go down to zero."