Essex cricketer Mady Villiers has vowed to keep knocking on the door of the England selectors with her performances for her county. The 20-year-old from Brentwood was named in the England Women Academy intake at the end of last year after impressing in the Kia Super League for her side Surrey Stars.
Her impressive performances included taking three wickets in the final against Loughborough Lightning as the former Shenfield High School pupil’s side lifted the title. And having made waves on the domestic scene, where she also represents Essex Women, the all-rounder insists a place in England’s squad is not out of her reach.
“With Essex I’m hoping to get promotion this year as we’re in Division Two at the moment,” she said. “I also want to play well and put in good performances with the England Academy. The Kia Super League has been brilliant as it’s one of the few times the girls get to be professional and for those six weeks we’re all professional players.
“We can focus on cricket for those six weeks and it’s grown the participation in the sport massively, so it’s been invaluable for the sport since it has come into being.
“My idol is Sarah Taylor, as she’s quite inspirational to me, and Nat Sciver as well as she captained me when I played with Surrey Stars and she’s just a great role model. My main long-term goal is definitely to play for England in the one-day matches and T20s and the dream would also be to play a Test match in the Ashes.”
Mady was speaking at a SportsAid workshop being hosted in partnership with GVC - the multi-national sports betting and gaming group - at the Lee Valley VeloPark in London. GVC are supporting 50 athletes across 33 sports, with each one receiving a financial award and personal development opportunities through SportsAid, including support around nutrition, mentoring and media training.
Olympian Leon Taylor and Paralympian Millie Knight, who are both SportsAid alumni, were also on hand at the workshop to share their experiences of elite level sport. And Leon, who delivered a mentoring session, said: “I’ve been involved with SportsAid for many years as an ambassador and it started when I received a SportsAid award as a young athlete.
“I really know how much of a difference getting that recognition can make. I’m supporting the cause now as a retired athlete because I know what the journey is like.”
GVC is proud to be championing the next generation of British sporting heroes by providing talented young athletes with financial support and personal development opportunities in partnership with SportsAid. Visit gvc-plc.com to find out more.