Former spin queen ‘bowled over’ by special honour

8 July 2024

World cup winning cricketer turned commentator receives University of Central Lancashire Honorary Fellowship

A world cup winning cricketer and broadcaster was ‘bowled over’ after being recognised by the University of Central Lancashire.

Former Lancashire and England spin bowler Alex Hartley, who now covers the sport for TNT Sports and BBC TV and radio, donned her academic cap and gown to receive an Honorary Fellowship earlier today, Monday.

Born in Blackburn, Alex was awarded the special honour for the significant contribution she has made to cricket and sports broadcasting.

The proud Lancastrian, who has just got back from covering the men’s T20 World Cup in the Caribbean and United States of America, said: “Receiving this award feels pretty surreal and it’s not actually sunk in yet.

“When I look at the names of people who’ve received this award in the past, I feel they are famous people who have contributed so much to Lancashire and to this University so it’s an incredible honour and I’m very privileged.”

The cricket fanatic made her debut for the red rose county when she was only 14. The left-armer soon became the team’s leading wicket-taker in the County Championship and was called up to England’s under-17s side.

"Receiving this award feels pretty surreal and it’s not actually sunk in yet"

Alex Hartley, new University of Central Lancashire Honorary Fellow

Alex’s continued improvement saw her receive her first England cap in a one day international in 2016, and only days later that was followed by her international T20 debut.

A specialist in the short form of the game, she was a key part of the England team that won the 2017 World Cup, where she claimed two important wickets in the final.

After retiring from playing, Alex’s enthusiasm for the game was recognised by national broadcasters. She can be heard offering her expert views on BBC radio’s iconic ‘Test Match Special’ while she also commentates for two national broadcasters. Alex, who has spoken publicly about her mental health battles, co-presents a cricket podcast and has a regular column in the Daily Telegraph.

Back on the field, last year she became one of the first two female coaches to be appointed in a men’s franchise league in the subcontinent. When she accepted the position of spin bowling coach for the Multan Sultans, it was celebrated worldwide as it showed the significant progress being made with women taking top positions within the elite level of the sport.

Slide 1 of 4

Alex Hartley's Honorary Fellowship01 / 04

New University of Central Lancashire Honorary Fellow
New University of Central Lancashire Honorary Fellow