James Taylor wins Young Cricketer of the Year award at recent dinner
James Taylor, the 19-year-old Leicestershire batsman, was named as the Cricket Writers' Club Young Cricketer of the Year for 2009 at the club's annual dinner at London's Plaisterers' Hall on September 21.
Taylor received the prestigious award from John Crawley, the former England batsman whohimself is a former CWC Young Cricketer of the Year winner, in 1994. Crawley, who won 37 Test and 13 ODI caps between 1994 and 2002-03, had recently announced his own retirement from first-class cricket after a prolific career with Lancashire and Hampshire.
Crawley, Taylor and his father Steve, plus Leicestershire chairman Neil Davidson, were all in attendance at the dinner because of the continuing support of Brit Insurance, whose annual sponsorship of the Cricket Writers' Club is specifically in association with the Young Cricketer of the Year award.
In the 2009 summer Taylor became the first teenager to score 1,000 first-class runs in a season for Leicestershire.
The England Under-19 international, who only made his first-class debut in 2008, had at the time of the award scored 1,177 first-class runs in 26 innings and 16 matches at an average of 58.85 with three hundreds, six fifties and a highest score of 207 not out against Surrey, when he became the first teenager to make a double-century for Leicestershire.
Taylor garnered almost double the number of votes of former winner Stuart Broad, who was the runner-up in this year's poll. In addition, there were honourable mentions for another former winner in Adil Rashid, as well as Chris Woakes, Liam Dawson, Moeen Ali and Tom Maynard.
Taylor is the fourth Leicestershire player to win the award following David Gower (1978), James Whitaker (a joint winner with Yorkshire's Ashley Metcalfe in 1986) and Broad, who was on the staff at Grace Road when he won three years ago.
This is the 60th year in which the Young Cricketer of the Year Award has been presented. Since 1950 the club's 60 selections have amassed more than 2,000 Test caps with only ten, before Taylor, not playing any Test cricket for England. Andrew Symonds, the English-born 1995 winner, has subsequently played 26 Tests and 198 ODIs for Australia. In addition, 37 of the former winners have amassed more than 1,400 limited-overs international caps.
Other awards made on the night went to Geoff Cook (Peter Smith Award), Stephen Chalke (CWC cricket book of the year award - collected on his behalf by Derek Underwood) and Clare Fathers (special award).
Thanks to Mark Baldwin.