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England cricket star Georgia Elwiss: Rachael helped us win the World Cup

A cricket star who was part of the England squad that lifted the Women’s World Cup said Rachael Heyhoe Flint played a key part in their success.

England star Georgia Elwiss and Rachael Heyhoe Flint
England star Georgia Elwiss and Rachael Heyhoe Flint

Georgia Elwiss, a former Wolverhampton Girls’ High School pupil like women’s cricket legend Rachael, watched on nervously as England staged an incredible comeback to win the final against India.

The match began with a tribute on the big screens at Lord’s to women’s cricket pioneer Rachael.

Meanwhile, Rachael’s son Ben said the outpouring of support for his mother had provided an ‘emotional’ start to the day.

The match began with a tribute on the big screens to women’s cricket pioneer Rachael Heyhoe Flint. Picture: Clare

Georgia said: “When Rachael’s face flashed up on the screen, it touched everybody. It was quite emotional.

“We knew she was looking down on us and we were thinking she was helping us in the game.

“She introduced the World Cup into the women’s game and she won it for England so it was amazing to be able to win it for her. I’m sure she was looking down on us.”

In a nod to Rachael’s enormous impact on the world of women’s cricket, Ben was asked to ring the famous Lord’s bell ahead of the start of India’s innings.

The 43-year-old said he was touched to be chosen to carry out the task – which saw him following in his mother’s footsteps.

Mr Flint said: “I was really touched and honoured to be able to ring the bell.

“We went as guests of the MCC president and he had put a few photos of mum up in the box, and one of those was her ringing the bell.

“I was doing it in mum’s place and also in support of her. It was a lovely moment.”

Rachael Heyhoe Flint’s son Ben rings a bell to indicate start of play

Sunday’s match was a nail-biting finale to the competition as India looked certain to win until a late collapse saw them lose.

And Georgia, who was not selected for the final XI, told the Express & Star it had been ‘a crazy 24 hours’ since lifting the World Cup at Lord’s.

“It was a very, very good day and we had a very good night to celebrate,” said the 26-year-old all-rounder.

“It’s massive for the women’s game. I was driving home and I heard the viewing figures for the final – 100 million worldwide and in front of a packed house at Lord’s. It’s amazing.”

She's a winner - Georgia cradles the World Cup

Georgia revealed the tension on the pitch was matched by the nervousness in the England dressing room as the game reached its thrilling climax.

“We just couldn’t watch,” she added. “It was just such a relief to come out on top in the end.”

Georgia said the 24 hours after the final had been a ‘whirlwind’ with media engagements, videos and photographs but she will soon be returning to action captaining Loughborough Lightning in the domestic women’s T20 competition starting soon.

“We’ve got a couple of days off then it is back to another campaign,” she said. “It will be good to get back to the shorter format of the game.”

And she believes the impact of the tournament could have a massive impact of girls and young women taking up the sport.

“It had been such an intense five weeks and such a big build-up to it with all the focus being on the World Cup being in England,” she added.

“With it being at home and the country getting behind us, it has been amazing. I don’t think anybody expected it to take off like it did.”

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