TWO youngsters who have come up through the Somerset youth system were honoured at the prestigious 2023 Cricket Writers Club Lunch (CWC). that took place in London on Monday, writes Richard Walsh.

James Rew won the NV Young Cricketer of the Year while Lauren Filer won the he Emerging Cricketer of the Year Award.

The event that was held at the Marriott Hotel in Grosvenor Square was attended by over 300 members of the press and media corp.

Among those in attendance were former England captains Michael Atherton and Graham Gooch as well as a number of former international players including Derek Pringle, Norman Cowans, Devon Malcolm and Somerset’s very own Vic Marks who was announced as the CWC new president during the course of the event.

Fast bowler Lauren who hails from Weston super Mare and plays for Somerset, Western Storm and London Spirit won the The Emerging Cricketer of the Year Award after taking four wickets on her Test debut against Australia in June.

Later in the summer the 22 year old who regularly played in the men's teams at Weston went onto play in the ODI series against Sri Lanka and took eight wickets in the three match series at the end of which she was named as Player of the Series.

James won the NV Play Young Cricketer of the Year, the club’s oldest award (following a breakthrough season with Somerset where the 19-year-old batter wicketkeeper scored over 1,000 runs in Division One of the County Championship, including five hundreds.

The 19-year-old, who plays his club cricket for Taunton St Andrews follows in a long line of previous winners including Tom Banton, Ben Stokes, Joe Root, Alastair Cook, Freddie Flintoff, David Gower, Ian Botham, Mark Lathwell and Fred Trueman among others.

Neither Lauren nor James were able to collect their awards as they are both out of the country so their parents received them on their behalf.

The fact that both Lauren and James are products of the Somerset Pathway is testament to just how successful the county youth system is.

Elsewhere, Harry Brook became just the second winner of the Bob Willis Trophy – to recognise England’s player of the year, male or female, while there was recognition for an array of talents in the 2023 Cricket Writers’ Club awards.

For the second year in a row, Nat Sciver-Brunt won the Women’s Cricket Award, in association with JM Finn, following her remarkable exploits during an Ashes series where England fought back to end the campaign all square at 8-8.