Nalisha Patel Selected for England Women’s Development Programme
Horwich RMI's Nalisha Patel has capped an excellent season by being named in the England Women's Development Squad at Under 19 level.
The 14-year-old off-spinner is one of the youngest cricketers in the group but the national selectors have been impressed by her regular wicket-taking and her prodigious ability to turn the ball.
Yet Patel is no one-season wonder. She first became part of the county set up in 2009 and went straight into U13s team even though she was only 10 at the time.
She took 16 wickets in her debut season and over the last four years she has taken 76 wickets at an average of 7.13. Patel also plays for Horwich's junior teams and Bolton Ladies.
"Nalisha is a regular wicket taker and her batting has also gained her a place in the top four in the order in the Under 15 and Under 17 county squads," said Jenny Laycock, the Lancashire Cricket Board's Women’s & Girls Cricket Development Officer and the captain of the Lancashire women’s team.
"She is able to turn the ball a long way and has often been surprised how much she can turn it. She has worked hard over the last year on her quicker ball which is now an effective part of her armoury.
"Nalisha is also an accomplished batter who struggled in 2012 to be as positive as she would have liked to have been with her shots, but her skill base is high and she has offered evidence of her talent in recent seasons with big scores."
Patel is one of three Lancashire girls to be selected for the England Under 19 development squad. Three others have been chosen in the Under 15 age group, confirming the high standing of Lancashire girls' cricket on the national stage.
“It's a fantastic achievement for all these girls to be recognised at these levels," said Laycock. "It’s the result of hard work during the winter and then putting it into practice during games."
Written by: Paul Edwards
5 other girls have been selected on the England Women's Development Programme, find out more at: Lancashire Girls Reach The Next Level.