PCA PRESS RELEASE
The team’s first assignment comes in the form of three ODIs against the West Indies.
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The England Women’s PCA Most Valuable Player Rankings will be reset for the start of the 2019 season, ahead of a schedule that will see the side take on the West Indies before hosting the Ashes.
Wicketkeeper-batsman Amy Jones currently holds the title, having been crowned winter MVP with 120 MVP points after enjoying an excellent run of form during tours of India and Sri Lanka. The 25-year-old narrowly edged out teammate Natalie Sciver by just two points, with star bowler Anya Shrubsole finishing in third.
Jones will look to continue her run of good form going into this summer’s set of international fixtures, which begins with a three-match ODI series against the West Indies, the first of which will be played in Leicester on Thursday 6 June.
The fixtures are part of the ICC Women’s Championship. England are currently second in the table on 18 points, with two more wins seeing them qualify for the 2021 ICC Women’s World Cup in New Zealand.
The fixtures couldn’t have come at a better time for the squad. Heather Knight’s side are currently unbeaten in 10 games across all formats – their fifth-best run of consecutive all-format victories. The reigning 50-over world champions will look to repeat their 2017 heroics in New Zealand, but must first focus on qualifying for the tournament itself.
A squad of 15 was named for the first two of the three Royal London ODIs against the West Indies on Tuesday, with 2018 NatWest Player of the Summer Sophie Ecclestone, Jenny Gunn and Sarah Taylor all returning. Freya Davies, Linsey Smith and Sophia Dunkley, who all featured on the tour of Sri Lanka, are the ones to miss out. Sussex’s Georgia Elwiss missed that tour with a stress fracture of the back, and is out once again due to injury.
England will benefit from the experience of wicketkeeper-batsman Taylor and bowling all-rounder Gunn, both veterans of that 2017 World Cup triumph, for the crucial fixtures against the West Indies. Spinner Ecclestone will also be looking to make her mark after recovering from a broken hand.
The versatile talents of all three will make them among the favourites for this year’s summer MVP.
The MVP formula was specifically designed to reward match-winning performances, and recognises the importance of the genuine all-rounder.
Points are awarded for scoring runs and taking wickets, but the context of the match is also taken into account. For instance, bonuses are given for hitting a big hundred in a low-scoring encounter, or taking top order wickets to guide your side to victory.
Catches, run-outs and stumpings are also accounted for, with bonus points also given to captains and players who end up on the winning team.
Following the ODI series, each member England Women squad will have the opportunity to further their MVP credentials during three T20Is against the same opposition. The side will then be looking to reclaim the Ashes from Australia throughout July, after just missing out during the 2017/18 tour down under.
View the MVP Rankings here.
Keep up-to-date with all the latest MVP news by following the @pcaMVP on Twitter.