Gloucestershire’s Gibson named in Storm squad

Danielle Gibson could become the first Gloucestershire player to appear in the T20 Kia Super League (KSL) after being named in the Western Storm squad for this season’s tournament.

The Dumbleton CC allrounder – who at 16 is one of the youngest players in the competition – has joined a team that includes England captain Heather Knight and fellow world cup winners Anya Shrubsole and Fran Wilson.

Danielle, a right arm seamer and hard-hitting batter has been selected following her performances for Gloucestershire Women and through her involvement in the England Women’s Academy programme.

Western Storm finished as runners-up in the inaugural KSL last season and are managed by Gloucestershire Cricket Board (GCB) women and girls development officer Lisa Pagett who has worked with Danielle since she broke into the county junior set-up five years ago.

Since then Danielle, who attends Dean Close School in Cheltenham, has played at every youth level for Glos and has also been part of the GCB’s Emerging Players Programme. She was Gloucestershire Women’s player of the year in 2016 – her first full year of adult cricket.

Lisa said: “To have been selected for the Storm squad at such a young age is a fantastic achievement for Dani and testament to the way she has performed since making the transition to senior cricket last year. To have the chance to train with some of the best players in the world and learn from them is an incredible opportunity that can only help her continue to develop her own game.

“Dani’s selection is brilliant for her as an individual but also sends a clear message to other girls in Gloucestershire that if they work hard at their game and put in performances the pathway is there for them to step up to the next level.”

In addition to the England trio of Knight, Shrubsole and Wilson, Gibson’s other Storm team mates include West Indies star Stafanie Taylor and New Zealand pair Rachael Priest and Holly Huddleston.

The KSL is England’s first ever semi- professional women’s tournament. Now in its second year it features six teams made up from the very best players from across the globe. Following on from a successful first season, six group matches will be shown live on Sky Sports for the first time.

The 2017 KSL gets underway on August 10 with the finals day on September 1 at Sussex County Cricket Club. Western Storm’s first match is a repeat of last year’s final as they face the Southern Vipers who are captained by England legend Charlotte Edwards. The Storm play Lancashire Thunder at Gloucestershire’s Brightside Ground, Bristol on August 26 with their other group games taking place at the County Ground in Taunton.

Western Storm skipper Heather Knight said: “I’m really excited to get back to the west country and join up with the Western Storm – the storm troopers.

“We had a really good tournament last year, finishing with that loss in the final to Southern Vipers and we’d love to go one better in what will hopefully will an even bigger and better tournament.

“We were a bit inconsistent with the ball last year but we’ve got some really good young players.

“Hopefully people will enjoy the chance to watch more good women’s cricket and we’d love to see the sort of crowds we got during the World Cup and lots of young girls as well.”