Harmison Tops The LV County Championship Rankings And Earn Season’s First Player Of The Month Award - 01/05/2007
They say that form is temporary but class is permanent – and the way in which Durham’s Steve Harmison has started the season suggests that the old adage may well be true.
In a year when LV County Championship form may, more than ever, hold the key to England Test team selection – Harmison has leapt to the top of the all new Professional Cricketers Association rankings and becomes the LV= Player Of The Month for April.
Harmison took eight wickets in his side’s opening fixture of the 2007 LV County Championship in a win at Worcestershire, and then a further seven as Durham lost out to Yorkshire in the North East derby clash at Headingley Carnegie.
In addition, he scored 61 runs and took one catch in those two matches, and those aspects of the matches also helped Harmison capture the season’s first prestigious award – with all areas of the game being considered under the new formula developed by the PCA.
The LV= awards will be using the new PCA Player Rankings for the allocation of all monthly and annual prizes this season, taking advantage of the new cumulative points system that rewards players for every run scored, every wicket taken and every catch held in the LV County Championship.
Players will be allocated points in the disciplines of batting, bowling, fielding and captaincy – with bonus points allocated for each winning match they play in. In addition, further bonus points are available for players who reach centuries, score more than 40 per cent of their side’s runs, take five or more wickets in an innings, etc.
The top 10 LV County Championship rankings for April also included Harmison’s fellow England pace man Matthew Hoggard at number six, Surrey’s Mark Ramprakash at number seven and 2006 LV County Championship Player Of The Year Mushtaq Ahmed at number four.
Justin Langer, who opened the season with that incredible innings of 315 for Somerset against Middlesex, just makes it in at number 10.
The use of the new formula for the LV County Championship awards comes after an extensive review of all player-performance related statistics in the game by the PCA – and reflects the fact that cricketers are required to be skilled at multiple disciplines.
Winners of the LV= awards will be calculated by combining players’ overall performances – with Harmison and the subsequent monthly winners picking up £750 and the season’s winner earning £1500.