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ECB duo Clarke and Collier praise Edwards and her England heroes

Saturday 20th June 2009

GILES Clarke (pictured), the England and Wales Cricket Board Chairman, hailed Charlotte Edwards’ England team after they beat New Zealand to win the inaugural ICC Women’s World Twenty20 in front of a crowd of 15,000 at Lord’s Cricket Ground.

Mr Clarke witnessed England win their second ICC global event in three months – adding to the ICC World Cup, which they won in Sydney in March – when they beat New Zealand by six wickets.

For the second ICC tournament in succession, England’s Claire Taylor was the player of the series. After the post-match presentation Mr Clarke said: ’These girls have raised the profile of women’s cricket in particular and women’s sport in general.

"They have proved not only to be outstanding sportswomen but also fantastic role models for the many thousands of young girls and women who are coming into cricket.

"They have lived with the pressures of being favourites to win this competition at Lord’s. Along the way they have demonstrated to millions of people worldwide what a fantastic team they are and what wonderful cricket they play.

"On behalf of the ECB board, executive, staff and everyone connected with women’s cricket in England and Wales I would like to say how proud we are of this remarkable team and their management, led by coach Mark Lane and his assistant Jack Birkenshaw."

ECB Chief Executive David Collier added: "The last three months are the culmination of years of investment and hard work. In 2005 we embarked on an ambitious strategic plan called Building Partnerships which set the target of being in the top two in the world or reaching the final of a global event.

"They have surpassed that target and now have become the first team in history to hold the ICC World Cup and the ICC World Twenty20 at the same time – and if that isn’t enough they have also won their last two Ashes series as well.

"On Tuesday there is the perfect opportunity for the members of parliament to honour the women’s team at a terrace reception, and then in early July they will be feted at 10 Downing Street by the Prime Minister. It is no more than they deserve. The nation should be very proud of this team."

Picture courtesy of Getty Images