England Women Earn Parliamentary Congratulations
England Women, who won the ICC World Twenty20 at Lord's on Sunday, have been congratulated by the Prime Minister Gordon Brown on their historic victory.
The Prime Minister congratulated the team on adding the ICC World Twenty20 trophy to the ICC Women's World Cup they won in March in Australia. The England team beat New Zealand by six wickets.
The Prime Minister said the team will go down in history as England’s best ever, noting that as well as the two ICC global trophies they also hold the Ashes.
“I want to send my congratulations to captain Charlotte Edwards and the whole England Women’s cricket team for a famous victory in the ICC World Twenty20 final at Lords," he said.
“I know that the whole country will want to join me in recognising and celebrating a remarkable achievement.”
Ben Bradshaw MP, Secretary of State for Culture Media and Sport, told a Terrace reception held in the team's honour: “This is a terrific achievement for Charlotte Edwards and the team and they deserve huge praise for adding another trophy after their 50-over success in Australia in the spring. How many other teams can claim to have won two world cups in the space of three months?
"On home soil, this should be a big boost for the women’s game and women’s sport as a whole. We share the ECB’s determination to build on this to get more women and girls playing cricket.”
David Cameron, Leader of the Opposition, added in a statement: “I’d like to congratulate Charlotte Edwards and the rest of the England women’s cricket team on their tremendous victory in the Women’s World Twenty20 competition. Their success in this competition, ending in an emphatic win at Lord’s on Sunday, is well-deserved and is a testament to the hard work and dedication of all those involved.
"Along with their triumph earlier this year in the Women’s World Cup, this victory shows that women’s English cricket is going from strength to strength and I am confident they can stay at the top of the world game for a long time to come.”
Sports Minister Gerry Sutcliffe was also on the guest list for Tuesday night's House of Commons Terrace reception, which not only recognised the success of the England women’s team but also the England men’s blind team who won their Ashes tournament and the ECB's successful hosting of ICC World Twenty20.
ECB's Head of Women’s Cricket, Clare Connor, said: "Today’s reception demonstrates the tremendous backing the women’s game has from politicians of all parties. The Minister for Sport attended our opening match in Taunton and we received many messages of support throughout the tournament.
"Today’s reception is a chance for the team to include our political friends in our celebrations and to discuss with them the further partnerships we need to build to continue to develop women’s sport. The messages from the Prime Minister and David Cameron demonstrate how this team have caught the nation’s attention and established themselves as the team of 2009.”
ECB chief executive David Collier added: "The last three months are the culmination of years of investment and hard work. In 2005 we embarked on an ambitious strategic plan called Building Partnerships which set the target of being in the top two in the world or reaching the final of a global event.
"They have surpassed that target and now have become the first team in history to hold the ICC World Cup and the ICC World Twenty20 at the same time - and if that isn't enough they have also won their last two Ashes series as well.
"Today is the perfect opportunity for the members of Parliament to honour the women's team at a Terrace reception, and then in early July they will be feted at 10 Downing Street by the Prime Minister. It is no more than they deserve. The nation should be very proud of this team.”