The Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy has provided an unprecedented opportunity for the non-England players to showcase their skills on decent pitches; and playing at First Class grounds really has been a sea change, as Emily Windsor told us after making 47* for the Vipers at The Oval:
“Playing on First Class pitches makes a massive difference. You can trust your shots more and you can play more creative shots, because you know the ball’s going to come onto your bat nicely. And then obviously the outfield – you know as soon as it beats that inner ring that it’s going for four. It’s different and that’s why you’re seeing some fantastic scores, like at the Ageas Bowl last week that innings by Georgia Adams – she’s a quality player and she was able to really show what she can do and what people can do in the women’s game.”
Hence we’ve seen 6 hundreds this year – many more than you’d have expected in the old County Championship, which was played mostly on club grounds, and where only 10 centuries were scored in Div 1 in the past 5 seasons.
Georgia Adams’ 154* for the Vipers versus the Storm was the highest score ever made by an uncapped player in top-level domestic cricket in England, and Adams tops the overall rankings with 420 runs in the competition, and the potential to add further to that in Sunday’s final.
Lightning (and Scotland’s) Sarah Bryce was only just behind Adams in the end, after scoring a big hundred of her own – 136* in Lightning’s final game against the Sparks. Aged only 20, she has set the foundations this season to push for an England career in the future if that’s what she wants, especially as she also comes with a pair of wicket-keeper’s gloves, bearing in mind that England’s only current backup option for Amy Jones is to press gang Tammy Beaumont into the role – something that she’d obviously do, but isn’t really her preference.
Looking at Strike Rates, the standout performance was from the Storm’s Alex Griffiths (ranked 6th), who was the only player in the top 50 run-scorers to record an overall Strike Rate of more than 100 – an impressive return which should surely see her bumped up from the Training Squad to the full England Academy over the winter.
|1. Georgia Adams (Vipers)||6||420||82|
|2. Sarah Bryce (Lightning)||6||395||79|
|3. Sophie Luff (Storm)||6||339||76|
|4. Eve Jones (Sparks)||6||334||74|
|5. Georgia Hennessy (Storm)||6||209||80|
|6. Alex Griffiths (Storm)||6||141||118|
|7. Heather Knight (Storm)||2||158||88|
|8. Marie Kelly (Sparks)||6||223||62|
|9. Jo Gardner (Sunrisers)||6||193||69|
|10. Charlie Dean (Vipers)||6||178||74|
|11. Maia Bouchier (Vipers)||6||155||84|
|12. Nat Brown (Thunder)||6||189||69|
|13. Abby Freeborn (Lightning)||5||167||69|
|14. Gwenan Davies (Sparks)||6||169||68|
|15. Sterre Kalis (Diamonds)||6||142||75|
|16. Danni Wyatt (Vipers)||2||119||89|
|17. Teresa Graves (Lightning)||6||114||89|
|18. Nat Sciver (Diamonds)||2||108||92|
|19. Holly Armitage (Diamonds)||6||150||63|
|20. Kathryn Bryce (Lightning)||6||141||65|
Batting Ranking = Runs * Strike Rate