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Heather Knight (2)

Star players hit their stride at WCSL 2019

WCSL news

International names and upcoming stars have made their impact in the Women's Cricket Super League 2019 in England.

With two rounds left in the group stage of the competition, table-toppers Western Storm and Loughborough Lightning have sealed their places in Finals Day on 1 September. Defending champions Surrey Stars have been knocked out, with Southern Vipers and Yorkshire Diamonds fighting for the final spot.

With the ICC Women's T20 World Cup 2020 only months away, every T20 game is a chance for international stars to hone their craft in the format and for young guns to boost their chances at selection. Here are five players who have stood out in the tournament so far.

Mignon du Preez

South Africa's former captain is not known as a slogger; she's made her name as an anchor in any side, quick between the wickets and adept at finding the gaps. This edition of the WCSL, though, has brought out a new side to her batting. While in 91 T20Is of a 12-year-long career so far, she has struck only 12 sixes, she has managed 10 already so far in this year's competition – the joint second-highest with Harmanpreet Kaur, after Danielle Wyatt's 12.

Her strike-rate is an impressive 145.56, and she averages 61.5 in eight matches for Loughborough Lightening. With Georgia Adams playing an important supporting role, du Preez has helped her side recover from a stuttering start to carry momentum into Finals Day.

Heather Knight

The England and Western Storm captain is the joint second-highest scorer in the competition after eight games, averaging 43.16. With openers Smriti Mandhana (259) and Rachel Priest (242) getting the team off to great starts, and Fran Wilson (221) also in fine form, there's no surprise that Storm are undefeated. Knight's steady hand at No.3 has injected a stability to proceedings, rescuing the side on the occasions where the risk-taking openers fail and, alternatively, supporting them when their risks pay off.  

Jemimah Rodrigues

In her maiden WCSL, the India youngster has gone from strength to strength, helping Yorkshire Diamonds recover from a slow start to challenge for the top three. She's her team's top scorer, averaging 38.16, at a strike-rate of 125.13. While her efforts went in losing causes against Lightning and Vipers, she saw her team over the line against Lancashire Thunder and Stars. She's been live wire in the field as well, holding her nerve for timely catches.   

Sophie Ecclestone

Lancashire Thunder are languishing at the bottom of the points table with no wins, but not for lack of trying on the part of Sophie Ecclestone. The left-arm spinner is the second-highest wicket-taker so far, giving away just 5.78 runs an over, with a best of 3/17 and a tendency to take top-order wickets. 

Kathryn Bryce

Last season, Kirstie Gordon, the former Scotland player, had a breakout year and made her England debut in the 2018 Women's T20 World Cup in the West Indies. This year could be the turn of Scotland's Kathryn Bryce to make a splash. Bryce, an all-rounder, will lead Scotland in the ICC Women's T20 World Cup Qualifier behind held at home in September. Before that, she's been getting valuable experience in the WCSL. She pitched in with a valuable rearguard effort against Thunder and also has seven wickets, with the likes of Lizelle Lee, Sarah Taylor and Dane van Niekerk as her victims. 

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