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When it comes to cricket, it is most definitely a man's world. However, this very British pastime has finally limped into the 21st century.

Claire Taylor has been named one of the five Cricketers of the Year by the sport's bible, Wisden Cricketers' Almanack - the first woman to receive the accolade in its 120-year history.

Taylor, 33, is in impressive company as previous nominees include WG Grace, Sir Don Bradman, Sir Garry Sobers and Sir Ian Botham.

'I'm the first woman ever to be named so it's really exciting,' she said. 'I was certainly surprised to hear that I had been selected and I've managed to keep it a secret from everyone, even my family. I'll definitely make some early morning phone calls to make sure they all know.'

Taylor, a maths graduate from Oxford who also holds down a job as a management consultant, was England's leading run scorer when the women won the World Cup last month.

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