Can lightning strike twice for England?

Batsman Claire Taylor realises that England face a huge challenge to repeat their success of 2009 this year.

England won the inaugural ICC Women's World Twenty20 in June with Taylor playing a starring role, hitting 199 runs in five innings.

But the 34-year-old is in no doubt that the challenge of retaining the title in the West Indies in May - when England will play Australia, South Africa and the host nation in the group stage - will be even tougher.

“It will be harder to retain the world Twenty20 than it was to win it,” she told ECBtv.

“I don’t mean to disrespect the teams that were in our pool last year but I think the pool that we have this year is more difficult.

“The West Indies are a right handful at home, so we got three really strong teams and South Africa beat the West Indies at home.

“So I think it is quite a tough draw and we will have to make sure that we play some good cricket and that we get through."

As well as the team triumph, the 34-year-old star batsman enjoyed long-deserved recognition in 2009.

She became the first women to be named as one of Wisden’s five Cricketers of the Year and then won the ICC’s Women’s Cricketer of the Year award before receiving an MBE in the New Year’s Honours.

But after three months off, having missed the tour to the West Indies, she is focusing on the challenges of 2010.

As Taylor took a break from only her third net session of the winter, she added: “All these awards are absolutely lovely but it is really about smacking balls and helping England win matches.”

Of her MBE, she said: “It was amazing and something people have spoken about since Charlotte (Edwards) got hers in the summer. So it was not a huge surprise but the honour of being recognised outside of cricket is great. It's something for myself and women’s cricket.”