‘I would love to be the No 1 spinner in the world’ – Sophie Ecclestone
Sophie Ecclestone, aged 19, is currently ranked No 3 in women's T20Is. © ICC

The England left-arm spinner Sophie Ecclestone has her sights trained on becoming the No 1 spinner in women’s cricket after a stellar 2018.

Ecclestone was named the ICC’s Emerging Player of the Year for 2018 after she took 35 wickets in 23 limited-overs games.

The 19-year-old, who played her first T20I in 2016, is England’s highest-ranked bowler in the ICC charts, currently at third place behind Australian Megan Schutt and India’s Poonam Yadav. In women’s ODI she is at 22, but her aim is to become the best in the game.

“I would love to be the No 1 spinner in the world in the next few years, that is my ultimate aim,” Ecclestone told Sky Sports Cricket. “I just want to keep working hard for the next year and if I do then hopefully I will get the results I want.” (READ: Wyatt, Brunt lead England to series win over India)

Currently back in England after being ruled out of the ongoing tour of India after fracturing the fifth metacarpal on her right hand, she said the tag of being England’s best spinner is something she has not gotten accustomed to.

“It is quite surreal being called England’s No 1 spinner,” Ecclestone said. “Especially with players like Laura Marsh, who has played so long for England, around the team. I have looked up to these players and watched them play for England when I have been in the stands, it’s nice to have them around me and for me to be able to go to them for advice.

“If Heather [Knight] calls on me, I love pressure situations. Becoming the No 1 spinner has come through hard work and consistently bowling my best ball over and over again. My arm ball is a big part of my game and my variations but iust working hard and keeping it consistent is a big part of it, so the batters make mistakes and not me.”