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England's Heather Knight on Ashes and Sky Sports Living for Sport

Inspiring a nation

Heather Knight says England Women are determined to prove a point to Australia in this summer's new multi-format Ashes.

Knight, 22, hopes the revamped contest - to be decided by the combined results of one Test, three one-day internationals and three Twenty20 matches - will raise the profile of the women's game.

"Sport has taught me so much - cricket in particular - the values you gain: leadership, team work, people skills."

Heather Knight

Australia won the last Ashes clash between the sides, in Sydney in 2011, and also overcame England on the final ball of October's Women's World Twenty20 tournament before beating Charlotte Edwards' side en route to lifting this year's World Cup.

Sky Sports Living for Sport athlete mentor Knight said that this summer offers England the perfect chance for revenge.

"The Test match will count for six points, we'll play three ODIs and they will be two points each and three Twenty20s, which will also be two points each. The winner will be the one that is best at all three formats, so it's exciting," she said.

"We've got most of our coverage and improvement in the game through limited overs coverage, so the natural progression was to bring Test cricket into that and try to get a bit more profile around the match.

"The winner of the Ashes will be the team that is best at all three formats, so that's quite exciting.

"We've had a difficult winter, narrowly missing out on two World Cups to the Australians, so it will be good to put it right this summer."


Six months ago Knight agreed to become an Athlete Mentor for the Sky Sports Living for Sport programme, a free secondary schools initiative that uses sport stars and sport skills to boost confidence, change behaviours, increase attainment and improve life skills.

Why cricket?

Knight, who started playing cricket at the age of six or seven, teamed up with the Sky Cricket team at Headingley during the second Test between England and New Zealand to explain the impact of the scheme, run in conjunction with the Youth Sport Trust, is having.

"It's a brilliant programme and I'm so privileged to be involved in it," she said. "You do really see how it affects the kids.

"It's not just about them improving their sports skills, it's about them learning from sport. Sport has taught me so much - cricket in particular - the values you gain: leadership, team work, people skills.

"It's about showing students what sport can give them and improving those skills in the classroom.

"It's brilliant to see the kids enjoying sport and coming out of themselves. It's really inspiring seeing the teachers as well, because they put in a great effort with the kids.

"An enthusiastic teacher really makes a difference. I had a brilliant teacher at school who really loved cricket and that sparked my inspiration as well.

"If you see the teachers really putting effort into it really works with the kids and it gets them involved."

To find out more about Sky Sports Living for Sport - including how you can get involved - visit