Western Storm seamer Freya Davies has joined teammates Heather Knight, Anya Shrubsole and Fran Wilson in being awarded a central contract by the ECB.
It is the first time that Freya has received a central contract and following the announcement she said: “I’m absolutely thrilled. It’s always been my aim to represent England and this is an exciting step in the right direction.
“I’m looking forward to continuing the hard work, and the challenge now of getting myself picked.”
Western Storm Head Coach, Trevor Griffin said: “I’m absolutely delighted for Freya. She’s worked incredibly hard at her game and this is thoroughly deserved. She’s put in so much effort and hard work, not just over the last 12 months, but ever since she started playing the game.
“She’s been superb for us in the KSL and last year she was our leading strike bowler. I have no doubts that she will be making her full England debut in the not too distant future.
“Obviously I’m also really pleased for Anya, Heather and Fran. They are three outstanding players who are world class at what they do.
“To have four players in that list is great for Western Storm and great for the region. They all have links to the South West and that’s really exciting for the cricketers that we’re producing down here.”
It’s been an excellent 12 months for Freya who had another productive year for the Storm and was named as the team’s Bowler of the Year at the end of season awards.
Alongside Freya, Surrey’s Bryony Smith, who received her first call-up to the senior team for last year’s tri-series against India and Australia, is now on a Rookie Contract.
Smith is joined on the Rookie list by Linsey Smith, Alice Davidson-Richards and Katie George.
Tash Farrant and Beth Langston have been released, while Dani Hazell announced her retirement from the international game last month.
The new contracts signify a higher level of remuneration for England Women, continuing the trend since the women’s game turned professional in 2014.
The overall salary pot has grown by 10 per cent on 2018, with several players receiving an increase of between 15 and 30 per cent on their 2018 salary. The bonus pot for bi-lateral series wins has also been increased by 25 per cent.
The full retained list is as follows:
*Denotes rookie contract