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By Peter Della Penna (on Twitter)
DreamCricket.com is wrapping up the year in United States Cricket by recognizing USA’s standout performers at the international level. The 2012 New Inning Foundation Women’s Cricketer of the Year is Nadia Gruny. The 28-year-old follows in the footsteps of Shebani Bhaskar and Indomatie Goordial-John who received the award in 2011 and 2010 respectively.
Gruny was USA’s standout player at the ICC Americas Women’s Twenty20 Championship in the Cayman Islands this past April. She was named the Tournament MVP after her performances at the top of the batting order helped USA to a 4-0 record in the event as she finished with 128 runs in four innings at an average of 32 with one half-century.
Image (right) - Nadia Gruny in action at the 2012 ICC Americas Women's Twenty20 Championship in the Cayman Islands. [Courtesy: ICC/Bryan Vandenburgh]
Gruny was a steadying presence at the top of the batting order for USA at the tournament. She top-scored for USA in three out of the four matches USA played in the Cayman Islands. Her highest score came against Bermuda when she made 54 off 58 deliveries in an 85-run win. Perhaps her most vital contribution came against Argentina when she top-scored with 27 in a low scoring battle in which USA prevailed by 10 runs. Gruny chipped in with the ball as well during the tournament, taking 2 wickets for 39 runs in 11 overs and also took one catch.
While Gruny made her USA debut in July of 2010 against Canada, the technically sound batter truly rose to prominence on the field in 2011 through her performances with the Tri-State Lynx women’s team. She scored 107 not out in a local tournament in New York in June of that year before scoring 110 off 65 balls against the Hollywood Rebels a month later at the 2011 USACA Women’s National Championship in New York.
The ease with which Gruny has excelled on the cricket field isn’t terribly surprising considering the amount of natural athleticism she possesses. Prior to migrating to the USA, Gruny was a member of the Trinidad & Tobago U-17 women’s national team in soccer. She then earned an athletic scholarship to continue playing soccer at South Carolina State University from 2002-2005 before graduating with a bachelor of science in marketing in 2006.
Gruny’s success on the cricket field should serve as an inspiration for other young women who have grown up playing other sports that with the right work ethic and dedication, it’s possible to apply their all-round athletic skills into becoming a very good cricketer capable of representing USA on the international stage.
In recognition of her achievement, Gruny will receive a plaque as well as a $250 DreamCricket.com Pavilion Shop gift certificate sponsored by New Inning Foundation.