The ECB have today confirmed the list of current centrally contracted women players for 2019, with 21 players on the list – 17 with full contracts and 4 “Rookies”.
The big news is that fast bowler Freya Davies, previously a “Rookie”, has been awarded a full contract, while Tash Farrant and Beth Langston have both been dropped from the list.
Davies graduated from Exeter University in 2017 and has been training with the full England squad ever since, evidently impressing coach Mark Robinson along the way.
Langston last represented England in 2016; the omission of Farrant is perhaps more surprising, given her inclusion in the WT20 squad at the expense of Davies.
Meanwhile Linsey Smith, as announced by CRICKETher last November, is now on a Rookie contract, alongside existing Rookies Bryony Smith, Alice Davidson-Richards and Katie George.
Kirstie Gordon and Sophia Dunkley, who both made their England debut in November at the World Twenty20, are still in full-time education and are therefore understood to be ineligible for a contract.
The full list of contracted players is below:
Tammy Beaumont (Kent)
Katherine Brunt (Yorkshire)
Kate Cross (Lancashire)
Freya Davies (Sussex)
Sophie Ecclestone (Lancashire)
Georgia Elwiss (Sussex)
Jenny Gunn (Warwickshire)
Alex Hartley (Lancashire)
Amy Jones (Warwickshire)
Heather Knight (Berkshire)
Laura Marsh (Kent)
Nat Sciver (Surrey)
Anya Shrubsole (Somerset)
Sarah Taylor (Sussex)
Fran Wilson (Kent)
Lauren Winfield (Yorkshire)
Danni Wyatt (Sussex)
Alice Davidson-Richards (Kent) (Rookie)
Katie George (Hampshire) (Rookie)
Bryony Smith (Surrey) (Rookie)
Linsey Smith (Sussex) (Rookie)
Why are Kirsty Gordon and Sophia Dunkley not allowed any type of contract?
Surely the unfortunate Tash Farrant has been a Loughborough student for the last two years…..? With a contract? This would have been an ideal opportunity to get the young players on board with contract security.
As Raf mentioned “it is understood that….” , seems strange to me!
Agreed, this seems strange and reeks of compromise and over-zealous cost-saving. Farrant and Langston have done nothing wrong, and surely the management could do something for Dunkley and Gordon too. The ECB are failing to put enough resources into both the national side and the women’s game in general. Meanwhile CA seem to think money is no object. It’s difficult to estimate how much effect this could have on the England team, in the short and medium term. We could start to see the lack of investment come home to roost this summer, though. At least the number of contracts has not been cut, I suppose.
The interview with the ECB Women’s game Director says it all really, jam promised tomorrow while the game struggles through another season of underinvestment and expected the England team to perform against a fully pro Aussie team.
Rather than reinvigorating the game the money in 2020 will be a last gasp attempt of CPR.
All this talk about a culture change is a smoke screen the women’s game stands or falls alone.
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In support of James P, until England Cricket Board stump up the money to emulate the generous and now thriving Aussies we will be chasing their tails.
We may do well on the odd occasion against CA, but the long term development and cash input will be a tough act to follow. The ECB and counties must hurry and bring on a Professional, Semi- Professional, home County Championship. With a wider offer of opportunity in the new”100” or whatever other competitions will be provided.