Cricket has come a long way from it being a male-dominated sport. Women have become equally competitive as their male counterparts. In recent history, we have witnessed some female players rise to the top to stand out as the best to have ever played the sport.
A surge in female participation in the sport saw countries set up female national teams to compete at the ICC Women's World Cup. There are visible differences between men's and women's games. These differences are meant to make the competition more fierce and less biased. In light of all this, who are the top female cricket players? This article highlights 15 of the best female cricketers of all time.
Who are the best female cricket players of all time?
Women's cricket has had a lot of extraordinary players and therefore reducing the list to 15 is daunting. Based on credible online publications and fan polls here is a compilation of 15 of the top female cricket players of all time.
15. Shashikala Siriwardene
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Shashikala Siriwardene is Sri Lanka's first female cricket superstar and the best female cricketer to come out of the country. She is also Sri Lanka's all-time leading wicket-taker, the only Sri Lankan woman cricketer to take 100 wickets at the WODIs. She played internationally for her country's national women's team for 17 years and captained them at the WODIs.
14. Lisa Sthalekar
Sthalekar is a pioneer of Australia's women's cricket. Though retired from active playing, she is still involved with cricket as a commentator and an activist, championing women to take up the sport. In her over a decade of playing the sport, she won four world cups and captained the Australian team. She is the first female player to score 1000 runs and take 100 wickets in the ODIs and was ranked the number one female cricketer in the world in 2008; the time rankings were introduced by ICC.
13. Myrtle Maclagan
Though Myrtle Maclagan's career was short, she played a tremendous role in pioneering cricket in England. She had just played 14 tests when World war two interrupted her career. She was the first female player to score in the first test century and is widely known for her high scores.
12. Betty Wilson
She was often described as a natural athlete who could "run like a hare," an offspinner with superb fielding capabilities. In her playing tenure that lasted ten years (1948-1958), she became the first player to score 100 and take ten wickets in a test. In 1985, she became the first female inducted into the Australian Sporting Hall of fame.
11. Debbie Hockley
Debbie Hockley is often considered one of the stalwart female players of her generation. Making a debut at 15 and then captaining the New Zealand women's cricket team at 21, she was a terrific batter and had 4000 ODIs to her name. She featured in 19 tests and scored about four centuries.
Her biggest win came in 2000 when she played a crucial role in helping New Zealand women's cricket team clinch its first World Cup title.
10. Ellyse Perry
Perry is an exceptional all-around player. She is also a footballer and a lady of many firsts. Currently serving as Australia's national team captain, she is widely considered by many the greatest female cricket player the country has ever had. She became the first woman to achieve double scoring of over 5000 runs and take 300 wickets in a T201 circuit.
She is also one of the most decorated female players in the world and was the first Australian to feature in both the ICC Cricket World cup and FIFA World cup. In addition, she has won the ICC Women's Cricketer of the Year Award thrice (2017, 2019, and 2020).
9. Jhulan Goswami
As one of the fastest bowlers of all time in female cricket, Jhulan Goswami is a force to reckon with and a trailblazer. She currently holds the record for taking the most wickets at the WODIs, and in 2007, she won the ICC Women's player of the year award.
In 2016 she rose to number one in the ICC Women's rankings and was considered to have played a significant role in helping India Clinch third place at the 2010 World Cup.
8. Meg Lanning
Meg Lanning led the Australian women's national team in what is considered the country's golden generation of female cricket. She made history when she became the team's captain at just 21, leading them to clinch six world championship titles. She holds the record for the most WODI centuries and is the first Australian to score 2000 T20 runs.
7. Charlotte Edwards
This former England captain was phenomenal during her heydays. She was the first male or female player to score 2500 in T20 Internationals. She led England to three championship titles. In addition, she was the first female player to score 1000 runs and take 50 wickets and 50 catches in WODIs.
For her efforts, she was appointed an English MBE in 2009 and CBE on her 2014 birthday. In 2008 she won the prestigious ICC Women's Cricketer of the year.
6. Sarah Taylor
In her heydays, fans often referred to Sarah as the Demon Slayer. She is considered the best Wicket-keeper amongst the current generation of players. She played a crucial role in helping England clinch two World Cup titles, a World T20 Championship, and three Ashes during her tenure.
In addition, she has been awarded ICC Women's Cricketer of the year twice (2012 and 2013) and was also awarded ICC Women's ODI Cricketer of the year in 2014.
5. Stafanie Taylor
At 17, Stafanie Taylor became one of the youngest female players to make an international debut. That marked the beginning of an era as the world was gifted with the phenomenal player she is today.
In 2013, she became the first male or female player to achieve the number one ranking in ODI in batting and bowling. In 2011, she was awarded the ICC Women's Cricketer of the year and subsequently became ICC Women's ODI and T20 cricketer of the year in 2012 and 2015, respectively.
4. Cathryn Fitzpatrick
In the course of her entire career, Cathryn Fitzpatrick was known as the fastest bowler. She led Australia to numerous world cup victories with her style of play. She was the first woman to reach 100 one-day appearances and became the third-best wicket-taker ever in Australia. This led to her winning the 2004 International Woman Cricketer of the year.
In 2019, Cathryn Fitzpatrick was inducted into the Australian Cricket Hall of Fame and the ICC Cricket Hall of fame.
3. Belinda Clark
Belinda Clark is often regarded as a revolutionary player who changed women's style of play and is one of the most influential, if not the most influential female figure in Australian cricket. In her 16 years of playing, she represented Australia in three World Cup campaigns winning in 1997 and 2005.
She was the first woman inducted into the Australian Cricket Hall of Fame and the second in the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame.
2. Mithali Raj
Mithali Raj is often regarded as one of the best players of all time. With a career spanning 19 years, she has one of the longest careers in women's cricket. During that period, she grew to become India's best female batter, leading the country in many championship campaigns. She is the only Indian captain in men's and women's cricket to guide her team to two 50-over World Cup finals.
In 2021, she became the leading run-scorer in women's international cricket and holds the record for the most half-centuries in WODIs.
1. Rachael Heyhoe-Flint
Rachael played a significant role in promoting women's participation in the sport and is often considered the best female cricket player in the world of all time. In 1973 she was instrumental in establishing the Women's World Cup and subsequently captained England's team to its first win. Rachael was the first woman inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame.
Frequently asked questions-FAQs
Below are some of the frequently asked questions about the best cricket players of all time.
What are the best female cricket teams?
Below is a list of the best female cricket teams according to the T20 rankings.
|New Zealand Women|
|South Africa Women|
|West Indies Women|
|Sri Lanka Women|
Who hit the most centuries in women's cricket?
Meg Lanning holds the record for the most centuries with 15 centuries. She captains the Australian national team and has been a crucial player in helping them clinch six world championship titles.
Who is the number one batsman in women's cricket?
With a rating of 723, Australia's Beth Mooney is currently the world's number-one batswoman, according to the latest ranking from the ICC.
Who is the fastest bowler in women's cricket?
Currently, England's Lauren Bell holds the record of the fastest bowler. In a match against India on 11 September 2022, when she was bowling to Smriti Mandhana, the speedometer put out a reading of 173 km/h.
Who hit the longest six in women's cricket?
India's Pooja Vastrakar currently holds the record for the longest six. In March 2022, in a match against Australia, she hit 34 off just 28 balls, which included an 81-meter-long six. The longest in female cricket.
Who is the best female cricketer in 2022?
According to the ICC ranking, Australia's Alyssa Healy is currently the best female cricketer of 2022. This 30-year-old star is a recipient of many accolades, including two ICC Women's Cricketer of the year (2018 and 2019), the Belinda Clark Award, and Cricket Australia Women's ODI Player of the Year, among others.
As it is pretty evident, the above best female cricket players of all time have all made tremendous personal strides and contributed immensely to women's sports, setting the bar so high.
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