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Sessay’s Jess Watson in groundbreaking Marylebone Cricket Club side
10:49am Thursday 21st February 2013 in Sport
SESSAY cricketer Jess Watson was making history this week.
The Yorkshire Ladies batsman, a regular in the North Yorkshire club’s second team in division three of the York & District Senior League last season, has been selected to represent the Marylebone Cricket Club in the 14-strong inaugural Under-19s Women’s Arch Trophy in Abu Dhabi and Dubai.
It is the first time in the MCC’s 226-year history that the club will have fielded an age group women’s side, and Watson was picked after impressing selectors with her performances for Yorkshire during the county season.
Watson scored 573 runs in 2012, leading the way for Yorkshire, which included her best-ever knock of 124 not out against Chester Girls U17s in July.
This week’s competition, which began on Monday and runs until Saturday, forms part of a wider MCC Spirit of Cricket Festival, which will culminate in the MCC match against the champion county at the end of March.
Watson was to play for the MCC U19s in three 50-over group matches against Durham, Devon and Essex. The final will take place at the Zayed International Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi.
John Stephenson, MCC head of cricket, said: “Congratulations to Jess on her selection for the MCC U19 Women’s squad.
“At the start of 2012, MCC collaborated with the ECB to enhance and expand the MCC Women’s Young Cricketers programme, and the selection of an MCC Women’s U19 side – for the first time in the club’s history – to take part in this competition represents the latest development in this partnership.
“The opportunity to play cricket in other parts of the world is a central focus of MCC’s involvement in youth cricket, and it is excellent that we are now able to accommodate this for a U19 Women’s team through our ongoing relationships with Sport Arabia and the ECB.
“The partnerships demonstrate the club’s determination to foster fresh talent and maintain its reputation as a strong supporter of women’s cricket, and I wish Jess the best of luck.”
Keith Houlston, Sessay secretary, said: “We’ve known Jess since she was very young. She’s had loads of runs in the third team and has more than held her own in the seconds.
“I don’t know how much longer we’ll have access to her services but she is a very valued playing member.
“There is a lot of interest in the women’s game and, hopefully, we will be watching her on television in international tournaments in the future. She has been on the radar for a while and she is still progressing.”