Hat-trick delivery for women's game sees England World Cup heroes singled out by Wisden

Anya Shrubsole hopes being named alongside Heather Knight and Natalie Sciver in Wisden's five Cricketers of the Year represents a watershed moment for the women's game.

England's Anya Shrubsole. Picture: Mike Egerton/PA

Only two women – Claire Taylor in 2009 and Charlotte Edwards, Knight’s immediate predecessor as England captain, in 2014 – have previously been selected in the previous 129 years of the award.

But England’s dramatic World Cup triumph significantly lifted their profile to such an extent that three of their star players have been distinguished.

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Shrubsole has made further history by appearing as the first women’s cover star in the annual Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack in its 155th edition after starring in the dramatic final victory over India at a sell-out Lord’s last July.

The seamer, who took five wickets in the space of 18 legal deliveries to tilt the balance in England’s favour, said: “To win such a prestigious cricket award it’s about as good as it gets for a cricketer, I would say, out of everything.

“I’m hugely honoured to be, a, on the front cover but also, b, named as one of the five Cricketers of the Year.

“When Claire Taylor received it and when Lottie received it, they were huge moments and this one is again.

“Hopefully, this paves the way and there will be many, many women’s cricketers to receive this accolade in the future.”

England's Heather Knight. Picture: Mike Egerton/PA

“I think everyone will say we’re a small part in a much bigger picture and of course it’s a huge honour individually but you could have picked any number of people from the team.

“We’ve had an amazing 12 months, especially with that World Cup win, and it’s something that all of us will never forget.”

England's Heather Knight. Picture: Mike Egerton/PA