Great individual performances have punctuated the illustrious history of the ICC Women’s World Cup, with quality often rising to the top on the game’s biggest stage.
In the ICC’s Upstox Greatest Players series, we look at some of the best performers in the history of the tournament.
England legend Charlotte Edwards is one of the game’s greats, having captained her side to both a World Cup title and a T20 World Cup win during an illustrious 20-year career.
And no batter has scored more centuries at ICC Women’s World Cups than Edwards’ four.
Edwards enjoyed a remarkable 20-year career with England, making her debut as a teenager and later captaining her country for a decade.
In ODIs she amassed 5992 runs at an average of 38.16, hitting nine hundreds and 46 half-centuries. She was also highly successful in Test cricket, averaging 44.10 across 23 Tests, with four centuries in that span.
Her crowning moment as captain came when she lifted the World Cup in Australia in 2009, but Edwards’ run-scoring brilliance at major tournaments ran right through her career.
WORLD CUP RECORD
Edwards racked up an impressive 1231 runs at World Cups, one of just five women to pass the thousand mark.
Those runs came from 28 inning at an average of 53.52, featuring seven half-centuries and a record-equalling four hundreds.
Edwards’ fourth tournament ton brought her level with Janette Brittin, also of England, as the only players to have reached the landmark that often in their careers.
EDWARDS IN HER OWN WORDS
“I remember the phone call I got when I was first called up for England. I was in the garden and my mum said there was a lady on the phone for me, and I ran in and the chair of selectors said ‘you’re playing for England next week against New Zealand at Guildford’. I remember just jumping up and down, my mum started crying, but I felt then that I was ready to play international cricket.
“Probably the most successful year for me as captain (was 2009). To win a World Cup in Australia and then a T20 World Cup at Lord’s and to win the Ashes as well, it’s unprecedented really. That was a really memorable year.
“We went to Australia for the World Cup and they were definitely favourites being at home, but it was just an unbelievable tournament and to lift the World Cup in Sydney is undoubtedly the highlight of my career.”
One of Edwards’ World Cup hundreds is the third-highest score in the history of the ICC event, an unbeaten 173* against Ireland back in 1997.
The massive century came off just 155 balls and featured 19 fours as Edwards put Ireland to the sword, steering her side up to 324/3 off 50 overs, a total that proved 208 runs too many for England’s opponents to chase.
Only Sri Lanka’s Chamari Athapaththu (178*) and Australia’s Belinda Clark (229*) have scored bigger individual scores at a Women’s World Cup.