WBBL06 Champion Sammy-Jo Johnson has been humbled after being voted by her peers in 2020 WBBL All Star Team of the Year.
“This is the one that means a lot because it's voted by the players, the people you play with and against. So, it definitely means a lot to be voted by them,” said Johnson.
The 28-year-old won her third consecutive WBBL title and first with Sydney Thunder after making the switch from back-to-back reigning champions Brisbane Heat. Johnson claimed 18 wickets in the regular season and was equal with Adelaide’s Sarah Coyte atop of the wicket-takers list after the preliminary games. Her four wickets in the finals series took her to the outright lead of 22 at an average of 16.
The all-rounder finished her campaign – and her third grand final - with an outstanding 2/11 against the Melbourne Stars. As an experienced head in a young Thunder team, Johnson took on the role as a leader in the hub, drawing early comparisons with her new teammates to the famous WBBL04 winning Brisbane Heat squad.
“Going through those experiences with the Heat for the last couple years, I said when I first came to the Thunder, the way that we started the tournament sort of reminded me of the Brisbane Heat squad of WBBL04.
“When you’ve got eight kids under the age of 20, or 21, they're thriving to get knowledge and experience from us as senior players. To be able to put the hand up and help, because I’ve been through this before and pass on any tips and advice, it was certainly nice to reap the rewards.”
This is the third consecutive season Johnson has been voted by her peers in the WBBL Team of the season, meaning she has been selected in every one of her championship winning seasons. Admitting she preferred the 50-over format to the game’s shortest only a couple of years ago, Johnson identified her adaptability as her key formula to success in the T20 competition.
“I really enjoyed the T20 format. It's so fast paced and you have to be adaptable. Teams come at you so hard these days and there is so much vision, footage and statistics out there on you as an individual. So, I think you have to continue to adapt every year.
“I just think I have to keep coming back every year in the WBBL and just keep adding tricks up my sleeve. I think I did that this year, which helped to the success of our team.”
This is the one that means a lot because it's voted by the players, the people you play with and against. So, it definitely means a lot to be voted by them.Sammy-Jo Johnson
Named captain, Aussie skipper Meg Lanning has also been selected for the third consecutive season after coming second on the competition’s run-scoring tally (485 runs). Lanning scored six half-centuries during the regular season, propelling the stars to a top of the table finish.
She’s been joined by Australian teammates Beth Mooney and Alyssa Healy, with the latter selected as wicketkeeper. Player of the tournament during the World Cup earlier this year, Mooney continued her outstanding form in the game’s shortest format, scoring 524 runs, the most in WBBL06.
A record number on internationals were selected this year, with six overseas players featuring in the team of 12. New Zealand skipper Sophie Devine features for the fourth consecutive year, coming third on the run-scorers list (448). She is accompanied by international teammate, leg spinner Amelia Kerr.
Heather Knight and Nat Sciver both represent England in this year’s team with South Africans Mignon du Preez and Laura Wolvaardt earning selection following their performances with the bat.
Taneale Peschel was the third Scorcher voted into the team with 13 wickets with a best of 2/5. Adelaide Strikers’ Sarah Coyte rounds out the squad as 12th, returning 18 wickets for her campaign, the equal highest in the competition before finals.
Sophie Devine | 448 runs | 130 SR | 4 50s (PS)
Beth Mooney | 524 runs | 119 SR |4 50s (PS)
Meg Lanning | 485 runs | 128 SR | 6 50s (MS)
Mignon du Preez | 375 runs | 125 SR | 4 50s (MS)
Heather Knight | 403 runs | 127 SR | 4 50s | 9 wkts, | 15.3 ave | 6.9 econ (ST)
Alyssa Healy | 402 runs | 161 SR | 1 100s | 3 50s | 6 ct | 5 st (WK) (SS)
Laura Wolvaardt | 347 runs | 104 SR | 2 50s (AS)
Natalie Sciver | 18 wkts | 14.33 ave | 6.70 econ | 194 runs | 130 SR (MS)
Sammy Jo Johnson | 18 wkts | 16.72 ave | 6.52 econ (ST)
Amelia Kerr | 16 wkts | 15.56 ave | 5.37 econ (BH)
Taneale Peschel |13 wkts | 19.69 ave | 5.95 econ (PS)
12TH Sarah Coyte | 18 wkts | 16.60 ave, 6.52 econ (AS)