Jaw-dropping knocks and being a non-stop threat with the ball have helped England’s Nat Sciver claim the Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy for the ICC Women’s Cricketer of the Year.
Nat Sciver – England
1346 runs and 22 wickets from 33 international matches
The sublime all-rounder produced brilliant performances across all formats and frequently delivered against the highest calibre of opposition.
Run-scoring is Sciver’s primary quality, and her runs came in a beautiful fashion too, with the right-hander carving out a deserved reputation as one of the most pleasing batters to watch in the game.
In total Sciver hit 1346 runs and took 22 wickets in 33 matches in the year, captaining England for much of her side’s home summer.
But it was the big moments that saw Sciver really stand out. She was exceptional in the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup 2022, finishing as the tournament’s third-highest scorer and playing a huge part in England’s qualification for the final.
And in the final itself it was Sciver who provided the sternest resistance to champions Australia, finishing unbeaten with a brilliant 148* from just 121 balls.
In Test cricket she was the standout performer against South Africa in both of her team’s Tests in the year, stroking a beautiful 169* that put England in complete control of the second Test.
Yet One Day Internationals were where she peaked in the year, scoring 833 runs at an average just a touch under 60 and with a strike rate of 91.43.
And career-best figures of 4/59 against South Africa were the highlight as she took key wickets throughout the year.
“I’ve been really happy with my form this year,” Sciver said after picking up yet another award for her 2022 performances – the England PCA Player of the Year Award.
“It’s weird to think that the World Cup was this year too. The two centuries in the World Cup were really special, and the Test match innings against South Africa was brilliant too.
“As cricketers we are perfectionists and often remember the negative things that have happened so it’s hard to remember all the good things but there have been some great memories and highlights.”
Sciver’s 148* against Australia in the final of the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup had begun with her walking to the crease with England at 38/2 and in big trouble chasing Australia’s huge total of 357.
While Sciver was out in the middle Australia were nervous, and she built partnership after partnership as wickets fell around her.
The next highest scorer in England’s innings was Tammy Beaumont’s 27, but Sciver cruised on, stroking 15 fours and one six in her genius knock.
Her solo heroics were not enough in the end, but Sciver could scarcely have done more to give England their shot at winning the World Cup.
Still just 30 years old, Sciver has plenty more international tournament appearances left in her.
The three other nominees for the award were India’s Smriti Mandhana, New Zealand’s Amelia Kerr and Australia’s Beth Mooney.
All four have been named in the ICC Women’s ODI Team of the Year.