Taylor reaps rich rewards

Claire Taylor says all the years of hard work have paid off handsomely after she was voted player of the World Cup.

Taylor was distraught when she made a duck as England lost in the semi-final of the 2005 World Cup to Australia.

Four years later she stands at the summit of the women’s game as the number one ranked batter, a World Cup winner and player of the tournament.

“It's absolutely brilliant,” she told ecb.co.uk. “It's starting to sink in now and it just feels amazing.

“What has been a long time in planning, training, preparing and sacrifice has all come to fruition in the end.

Charlotte Edwards & Claire Taylor

Claire Taylor and Charlotte Edwards pose with the World Cup trophy after beating New Zealand

“I like to have my goals, the girls take the mick sometimes, but after 2005 where I didn't even make a contribution, to come out of that, make some significant life changes and for it all to work is just brilliant.

“It was a little bit surreal when I went up to pick up the trophy. It was like the Champions' League when all those things go off.

“To be involved in it is just brilliant but what will mean more though is standing here with all the players and all the support staff - we will sing our victory song and enjoy the moment together. This is a long journey which we have made together and it's been such a hard one.”

Taylor gave the innings a little push with a quickfire 21 but her dismissal signalled a collapse as England stuttered to 149 for six in search of 167 to win.

She admitted she was a little nervous watching Nicky Shaw and Holly Colvin knock off the winning runs.

“It's a team game and everyone has put their hand up in some way to get us over the line,” she added.

“It shows the strength of the girls and the people we have around us that we have come through.”