Middlesex all-rounder and South East Stars pace bowler win first accolades of 2024.

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Middlesex’s Ryan Higgins and South East Stars’ Ryana MacDonald-Gay have been voted PCA Players of the Month for April following some phenomenal performances in domestic cricket.

The pair were shortlisted through the PCA’s Most Valuable Player Rankings, powered by Argentex, for their performances in April as the top four players according to the unique algorithm from the men’s and women’s game faced a public vote. New for 2024, the PCA winners were decided by a 50:50 split between the PCA MVP Rankings and the public vote.

In the men’s category, Higgins won a significant proportion of the public vote, taking him from fourth on the MVP Rankings to April’s winner for the second year in a row. Warwickshire duo Rob Yates and Alex Davies came in second and fourth respectively, as Nottinghamshire keeper-batter Joe Clarke finished third.

For the women’s award, MacDonald-Gay won almost two-thirds of the public vote, alongside being the highest ranked player on the MVP table during April to claim her first PCA Player of the Month award. Western’s Storm’s overseas all-rounder Amanda-Jade Wellington came second, with MacDonald-Gay’s South East Stars teammate, Tash Farrant, in third. Northern Diamonds’ Lauren Winfield-Hill was close behind in fourth.

Higgins voted April’s best player

A brilliant start to the season, once again, from the Middlesex all-rounder was highlighted by his 448 runs at an average of 112.

The 29-year-old also took nine wickets at an average of 28.7, earning him 102 MVP points during the month.

Picking up a Match MVP award against Glamorgan for his 30 and 155, Higgins also scored a phenomenal career best 221 at Lord’s against Glamorgan.

Higgins will receive a bespoke Mappin & Webb trophy for winning the April PCA Player of the Month and recently described what it was like to win the accolade in back-to-back years.

“It was really nice to win the award again, scoring some runs and taking wickets has been great, I suppose parts of my game are suited to the early season.

“Scoring a double hundred at Lord’s was incredible, it was very favourable towards the batters but it was a great feeling.

“The Kookaburra was a nice challenge to bowl with but the conditions didn’t suit that style of ball, wickets have been quite slow with all the weather around.

“One of the main aims for the season is to get promotion to Division One and put our stamp down in the Vitality Blast, we’ve had some good recruitment which should help our chances, it’s an exciting side to be a part of.

“It means a lot to know that the fans are recognising my performances, I’m very appreciative of all those supporters that still turn up on the cold days in April, it’s been amazing to see the love for county cricket.”

MacDonald-Gay wins April PCA Player of the Month

South East Stars’ young pace bowler took 12 wickets during April at a phenomenal average of 7.9, earning 59 MVP points.

Picking up her career best figures against The Blaze, MacDonald-Gay took 5-31 to help her side to victory.

The 20-year-old secured a Match MVP against Central Sparks for her 4-18 and was the leading wicket-taker in the Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy for the month.

MacDonald-Gay will also receive a bespoke Mappin & Webb trophy for winning her first PCA Player of the Month award.

“It means so much that there are people getting behind women’s cricket, watching the games and voting for these awards.

“It was great taking my first five-fer against Blaze, I think Leicester is my lucky ground because I was seem to do well there, the buzz around the team was great that day and getting the win was even better.

“We’ve worked hard all winter to get where we are and hopefully we can come away with a couple of trophies this year.

“I’d love to play for England one day, there are so many great players in that squad now but if I keep working hard I think I can get there.

“Regarding the new structure, I’m a Kent girl at heart, but I want to be somewhere with Tier 1 cricket which will be best for my development. I think the new structure will be great for the women’s game under the one club, two teams ethos.”