Durham man comes back strong to sit top of Championship Rankings.

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David Bedingham is the early frontrunner for this year’s PCA County Championship MVP after another man-of-the-match performance saw him reclaim top spot in the MVP Rankings from Derbyshire’s Matt Critchley.

The Durham batter is in the form of his life, having scored another 70.4 MVP points this week to bring his cumulative total for the season up to 136.2 points at an average of 45.3 points-per-game.

Bedingham was simply sensational in scoring a career best 257 against Critchley’s Derbyshire at Emirates Riverside. No other batter passed 75 and Bedingham’s mammoth knock accounted for 54% of his team’s first innings of 475, all of which contributed to his huge MVP score this week.

It means Bedingham is back out in front in the Championship MVP, having led after week one, but a gap of just two MVP points separates him from second placed Critchley, who also enjoyed another fruitful week after scoring 69 in his side’s second innings.

Yorkshire opener Adam Lyth currently occupies the final podium place with 109 MVP points after scoring another 108 match runs this week, whilst Craig Overton has shot into the top five after producing a match-winning display to help Somerset to victory over Leicestershire.

Overton claimed eight match wickets – including 5-25 in the second innings – at eight runs apiece and scored 24 runs with the bat to earn 45.7 points and bring his cumulative total for the season up to 107.6 points, enough to put him fourth in the Championship MVP.

The all-rounder is back in familiar territory, having been named the Bob Willis Trophy MVP after accumulating 202.5 MVP points at an average of 33.8 points-per-game during last year’s competition.

Sussex’s Ollie Robinson completes the current top five of the brand-new MVP, which was updated for 2021 after the PCA partnered with CricViz and the players to refresh the way the Association rewards the top performers in the game.

The new system is built on the original formula which was created in 2006 to identify the match-winning contributors in any given fixture, and takes into account key contributions such as scoring quickly, claiming top-order wickets and taking catches in the field to give the most accurate reflection of the best players in the game.

Further MVP headlines from this week include one of the performances of the season so far from Northamptonshire’s Ricardo Vasconcelos.

With his team needing 355 to win against a Glamorgan side which had previously declared on 311-5, Vasconcelos struck a sublime career best 185 not out from just 221 balls to help his side to victory by seven wickets at Wantage Road.

Vasconcelos was duly named MVP of the Match with 55 points and moved up to sixth position in the Championship MVP.

It was a good week for English spinners as Liam Dawson, Matt Parkinson and Dom Bess were named the MVP of the Match in their respective fixtures.

Both Parkinson and Bess bowled their sides to victory, with Parkinson claiming a career best 7-126 against Kent to earn 38.3 MVP points, and Bess taking six wickets in the final innings to score 45.5 points against Sussex.

Dawson meanwhile, had a strong week with the bat in making 65, and also claimed five match wickets to occupy seventh position in the Championship MVP.

Another England international, Nottinghamshire’s Haseeb Hameed, had a week to remember as he scored a century in both innings of his side’s fixture against Worcestershire.

The 24-year-old faced 635 deliveries – an all-time record for a single County Championship fixture – to help his team secure what at one stage seemed an unlikely draw at New Road. Hameed is now 18th in the Championship MVP with 75.8 MVP points.

Moving into week four of this year’s County Championship, the MVP top 10 is almost evenly split between batters, bowlers and all-rounders, with eight different counties represented.

Bedingham and Critchley are the early frontrunners but with five players already past the 100-point mark, the 2021 Championship MVP award remains up for grabs.

For more information on the brand-new MVP Rankings, contact the PCA’s Head of Communications Luke Reynolds at luke.reynolds@thepca.co.uk or the PCA’s Communications Executive Peter Clark at peter.clark@thepca.co.uk.

View the brand-new MVP Rankings and keep up-to-date with the latest MVP news by following @pcaMVP on Twitter.

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