Rachel Hopkins said it’s going to be tough but I’m looking forward to it © Getty Images (representational image)
Rachel Hopkins said it’s going to be tough but she is looking forward to it © Getty Images (representational image)

Rachel Hannah Marie Hopkins will become the first woman to captain Derbyshire men’s cricket. Only a few women have captained men’s cricket teams in England. Hopkins will become the skipper of Sawley & Long Eaton Park Cricket Club 2nd XI. 23-year-old Hopkins besides being a professional woman cricketer for Derbyshire is also their Cricket Development Coach. She is a right-handed batswoman and a medium pace bowler. In limited-overs cricket, Hopkins has a batting average of 23.42 from 55 matches she has played for Derbyshire Women. She has scored 1171 runs with six fifties to her name. Hopkins has also taken 43 wickets at an average of 23. She has also played 22 T20 matches scoring 339 runs at 19.94 with one half century. She has also picked up 14 wickets in the 22 games she has featured in.  READ: Derbyshire captain Wayne Madsen completes 8,000 First-Class runs

In a conversation with Cricket Badger she said, “It isn’t an opportunity I thought would come around but, in the committee meeting when I was put forward, I was pleasantly surprised to be honest. When I rock up on a Saturday I’m one of the boys really so it hasn’t really phased me. Having the captaincy role is going to put me outside my comfort zone. It’s going to be tough but I’m looking forward to it.”

Meanwhile, Andrew James, Chairman of Sawley & Long Eaton Park Cricket Club said, “Rachel and her family have been a part of this club for many years and she stood out as the obvious choice when we were looking for a second eleven captain. Yes, she’s an inspiration for the girls at our club and across Derbyshire, but Rachel can look after herself out in the middle with the blokes. She’s as good at cricketing banter as she is with the bat and ball.”