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England set for white ball subcontinent challenge.
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England all-rounder Natalie Sciver goes into the series against India leading the England Women’s PCA Most Valuable Player Rankings for the Winter after an impressive ICC World T20 campaign where she helped her side reach the final.
Sciver has 39 MVP points to her name, 2.5 points ahead of Kirstie Gordon who misses the tour due to injury while Amy Jones will be looking to continue her fine form, which sees her in third position with 35 points.
The 12 game tour sees Heather Knight lead her team in three ODIs and three T20Is against India before then travelling to Sri Lanka where the national side will mirror their tour of India with six games so there is a dozen opportunities for players to step up and show why they should be the Winter MVP.
The MVP formula is designed to identify the match-winners and key influencers of matches.
A more rigorous analysis of player performances than traditional batting and bowling averages, points are accrued for all runs scored and wickets taken, these are then adjusted within the context of the match.
Catches, run-outs and stumpings are also accounted for as well as bonus points for captains and players who are on the victorious side.
With wicketkeeper-batsman Sarah Taylor and seam bowling all-rounder Katherine Brunt both returning in India, the duo will add extra experience and quality with both players unavailable for the World T20.
England arrived in India earlier this month in second position in the ICC ODI Rankings, marginally ahead of India with Australia currently at the top of the ODI and T20I standings, however, a good second half of the winter would reaffirm the current World Cup holders as the team to beat in the 50-over format.
It will be England’s first opportunity to bounce back after the World T20 final disappointment where they lost to Australia by eight wickets in the West Indies.
Despite an impressive run in beating South Africa and India en-route to the final, it was not to be for Knight’s England. The captain will be looking to transfer her early tour form from Monday’s warm-up game after hitting an unbeaten 64 to guide England to a narrow two-wicket victory, she currently sits in fifth position in the MVP Rankings.
The Board President Women’s XI formed a tough challenge, despite Anya Shrubsole taking four wickets to dismiss them for just 154. The seam bowler is in fourth position in the Rankings with 34 points to underline her consistency in an England shirt.
The tourists fell to 11-4 in pursuit of their target and it was left to Knight and Lauren Winfield to guide them home with the Yorkshire batsman finishing with 23 from 22 balls.
Tammy Beaumont was a noticeable absentee from the warm-up match and England’s Summer MVP will be aiming for a much improved second half of the winter. By her own high standards, the opener struggled for fluency in the World T20 and now has the perfect opportunity to show her class against one of the world’s best outfits in India. Currently in eighth position in the MVP, it would not be a surprise to see the Kent star surging up the rankings.
To view the Women’s MVP Rankings, click here.