Western Storm announce England players

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The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) have today announced which of the England Women’s Performance Squad members will play for which teams in the first edition of the Kia Super League this summer.

The Western Storm will be captained by former Devon opening batsman and England women’s vice-captain Heather Knight who will be returning to her West Country roots.  She will be joined by Somerset stalwart Anya Shrubsole and ex-Somerset middle-order batsman Fran Wilson.

Knight England Women's Squad Portraits England Women's Squad Portraits

Following the announcement Heather Knight said: “As soon as it was announced that there would be a Kia Super League team based in the South-West I knew that was where I wanted to play.

“This is where I grew up, playing my cricket down in Devon at Plymstock CC, so I’m very excited by the opportunity to captain Western Storm this summer.  Having spent time on both the Somerset and Gloucestershire cricket academies, it’s also brilliant that we’ll get to play all of our home matches at those two county grounds.

“I’m really pleased that Anya Shrubsole and Fran Wilson will be in the Western Storm team with me.  For the tournament to be competitive it’s crucial that all six teams are well matched.  It’s also important that players are linked as much as possible with teams where they have a natural allegiance.

“With Anya, Fran and myself all coming from the West Country, it’s great that we’ll all get to pull on the Storm colours and play together this summer.”

England Women’s Captain, Charlotte Edwards, said: “With three or four England players, plus three overseas players per squad, the standard of the Kia Super League is going to be very high; exactly what’s needed to take our game forwards.”

Kia Super League General Manager, Jo Kirk, said: “The key considerations when initially approaching the player allocation process were to ensure an even balance of talent across the six teams, alongside factoring in the local allegiances of the players as much as possible.

“Each of the teams will have a squad of 15 players, which will consist of a maximum of four centrally contracted England women’s players, three overseas players, and a maximum of three England Women’s Academy players.  The remainder of players will come from the England Women’s Development Programme and a comprehensive county talent identification process.

“By the end of this process, the ECB will have collaborated extensively with the six hosts to select 90 players from a talent pool of nearly 200 from this country and across the world, to compete in the Kia Super League.”

All images courtesy of the ECB