Clark presses claim for North-South selection
Lancashire all-rounder Jordan Clark has thrust himself into contention for selection for next year’s North-South Series with a productive week in the Professional Cricketers’ Association Most Valuable Player Rankings.
Clark played a leading role in Lancashire’s crushing Royal London Cup win over Worcestershire at Emirates Old Trafford yesterday where he recorded his List A-best performances with bat and ball.
First Clark made an unbeaten 79, which made up 25 per cent of Lancashire’s 313 for five, and then took four for 34.
The 26-year-old Cumbrian earned 29 rankings points for his efforts and has now climbed to fifth in the competition’s PCA MVP on 83 points and is well-placed to push for automatic selection for North-South selection.
After the success of this year’s inaugural series, which was played in the United Arab Emirates in March, the top four players in the PCA rankings from both the North and South Groups will again earn automatic qualification for the 2018 series.
Clark is currently the third highest-ranked England-qualified player in the North group behind Durham opening batsman Keaton Jennings and Warwickshire batsmen Sam Hain.
The PCA MVP Rankings system identifies the match-winners and key influencers of matches throughout the domestic season.
The formula takes into account conditions, quality of opposition, captaincy and strike-rates as well as runs scored and wickets taken.
Clark’s 50 overs performances have taken him into sixth place in this season’s overall PCA MVP with 133 points, 62 behind Yorkshire’s Gary Ballance, the new leader.
Clark’s haul of 50 rankings points in the Specsavers County Championship included 22 for his maiden first-class century in the draw with Surrey last month.
Wicketkeeper Alex Davies is Lancashire’s next best-placed player in the overall PCA MVP table in 17th position on 109 points.
Dane Vilas, who made an unbeaten century against Worcestershire, is 20th in the rankings in the RLODC with 60 points.
Lancashire captain Steven Croft’s season has been disrupted by a broken thumb which forced him to miss his first List A match in 11 years.
But Croft made his mark in his second match back by plundering 127 from just 83 balls in last Sunday’s win over Warwickshire at Edgbaston and came away with a haul of 31 rankings points.
The full PCA MVP Rankings table can be viewed here.