Issy Wong moves to Western Storm on loan after Central Sparks omission

Issy Wong shows off her juggling skills ECB via Getty Images

Issy Wong, the England fast bowler, has joined Western Storm on loan for the Charlotte Edwards Cup after she was left out of the Central Sparks team for their first two matches of their T20 campaign.

Wong, who turned 22 last week, played for England as recently as September and featured for Mumbai Indians in the Women's Premier League in March. But after a quiet start to the season in the 50-over Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy, she was not selected by the Sparks for their opening T20 fixtures and has pursued a move away.

The ECB - who are Wong's primary employer, as a centrally-contracted player - have approved her loan move to ensure she will be playing competitive cricket. Storm said in a statement: "The ECB have sanctioned the move to ensure fast bowler Wong is able to maximise her playing time over the coming weeks."

Wong played all three formats for England in the 2022 summer at the age of 20 and was one of the stars of the inaugural season of the WPL, taking 15 wickets to help Mumbai Indians to the title - including a hat-trick in the eliminator. But she has struggled for consistency since and has lost her place in England's squads.

This season, she has taken three wickets at 56.33 in five Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy fixtures and has also featured for an ECB Development XI against the touring Pakistan squad. She was a surprise omission from the Sparks' T20 side, though they have won their opening two fixtures.

Wong is likely to play a more prominent role for a Storm side who have lost their opening two matches and are currently without Lauren Filer, who is on England duty. She will also target more opportunities with the bat, having spent most of this season batting at No. 8 in 50-over cricket.