England captain Heather Knight has won this year’s Walter Lawrence Women’s Award after scoring a sparkling unbeaten 159 for Berkshire against Cricket Wales. Knight’s innings, which was scored off 125 balls and included 15 fours and 1 six, saw her side home by 3 wickets after chasing down Wales’ total of 232 for 9 in the Division 2 match at Pontarddulais CC on May 26.
Knight has been an England regular since her debut in 2010, attaining the captaincy in 2016, and to date she has played in 7 Tests, 98 One-Day Internationals and 63 T20 Internationals. The 28-year-old all-rounder led her country to a thrilling win in the 2017 Women’s World Cup, which climaxed with a nail-biting victory over India at Lord’s. Following the team’s success she was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s 2018 New Years Honours list and in April 2018 was named one of the five Wisden Cricketers Of The Year.
Knight joins her England colleagues, Nat Sciver and Tammy Beaumont as a second-time winner of the award, having previously won with a score of 157 for England against Australia in 2013. She will receive a special silver medallion and prize of £500 at the Walter Lawrence Trophy Presentation Dinner in The Long Room at Lord’s on November 13.
Cameron Delport of Essex still leads this year’s Walter Lawrence Trophy with a 38-ball century scored on the second night of this season’s Vitality Blast T20 Competition, at Chelmsford on July 19. The 30-year-old South African, who holds a British passport, put Surrey to the sword finishing his innings on 129, scored off 49 balls and including 7 fours and 14 sixes. On a drizzly evening, with the match shortened to 15 overs per side, Delport and his partner, Dan Lawrence, flayed the Surrey attack for 135 runs for the fourth wicket in just 6.5 overs. Essex’s total of 226-4 proved too much for Surrey who fell short by 52 runs.
Oliver Batchelor of Leeds/Bradford MCCU is the winner of this year’s MCC Universities Award with a mighty 215 not out, scored against Cardiff MCCU in the 3-day drawn match at Usk CC on April 25. During his remarkable innings, which included 29 fours and 1 six, he shared a 3rd-wicket stand of 247 with Ben Pearson and helped his side post a total of 458 for 5 declared.
The quartet of Walter Lawrence Trophy awards, supported by “Veuve Clicquot”, encompass four distinct areas of the game: the Walter Lawrence Trophy, for the fastest century of the season; the MCC Universities award for the highest score by a batsman from the six MCC Universities against the first-class counties or in the MCCU Championship; The Walter Lawrence Women’s Award for the batsman who makes the highest individual score in a home season from the ECB Women’s One-Day Cup and all England Women’s matches played on soil, and, finally, the Walter Lawrence Schools Award for the highest score by a school batsman against MCC.
Now in its 85th year, the Walter Lawrence Trophy, awarded for the fastest hundred of the season, is open to all domestic county competitions as well as One-Day Internationals, T20 Internationals and Test Matches in England.
Photograph (C) Bahn Fend