Australia’s Alyssa Healy opens up about her experiences of sexism within cricket

Australian cricket star Alyssa Healy has opened up about her experiences of sexism within the game.

Healy is one of the foremost stars of women's cricket and comes from a family with great cricketing pedigree, with her uncle Ian a legendary Australian wicketkeeper. During her own illustrious career, Healy has won five T20 World Cups and one 50-over World Cup and helped spearhead the rise of the women's game.

However, when she first began playing, women's cricket was nowhere near as prominent as it is today and she was the only girl in her school team. Reflecting on that experience, Healy told Yahoo Sport: "There were people that had issues with it.

"I distinctly remember my grandma was down looking after me, there was a knock on our door at 6am. I opened the door and a reporter was holding up a newspaper.

"On the newspaper was a headline of Osama Bin Laden and right next to it was a photo of me in my Barker uniform. Someone had written in a letter saying it was a disgrace that there was a girl in the team, and it was a boy's competition and that was such a weird feeling for me.

"I thank my parents, they sheltered me for a lot of my life from seeing that real sexist behaviour." Healy also spoke about sportswomen constantly getting compared to their male counterparts, describing it as "the biggest challenge" they have to deal with.

"The biggest challenge we face in sport is we are always being compared to men, in whatever sport that might be, and it's just such an unfair comparison," she added. "Those little extra challenges, which are like death by a thousand cuts every single day, when we show up to our job.

"Which is like, we are not quite good enough, we need to be better, we need to be like the men. I think that is a real challenge we face every day and I applaud every single female athlete who gets up out of bed everyday and wants to break down those glass ceilings.

"We're constantly fighting battles every time we leave our house knowing that whatever we do, is never quite good enough. Sometimes it becomes too hard, but thankfully I say 'not going to let them win, I'm going to go out there and keep driving'."

Can you help underprivileged children experience the joy of cricket? Charity Bat for a Chance donates cricket kit to those most in need and is also fundraising. Find out more here

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