Ebony-Jewel Rainford-Brent

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Ebony-Jewel Rainford-Brent
Rainford-Brent giving speech in 2013.jpg
Personal information
Born (1983-12-31) 31 December 1983 (age 33)
Lambeth, London, England
Batting style Right-handed
Bowling style Right-arm fast-medium
International information
National side
ODI debut 11 August 2001 v Netherlands
Last ODI 01 March 2010 v India
Career statistics
Competition ODI
Matches 22
Runs scored 377
Batting average 23.56
100s/50s 0/2
Top score 72
Balls bowled 96
Wickets 2
Bowling average 45.00
5 wickets in innings 0
10 wickets in match 0
Best bowling 1/8
Catches/stumpings 4/0
Source: [1], 22 December 2014

Ebony-Jewel Cora-Lee Camellia Rosamond Rainford-Brent, FRSA (born 31 December 1983 in Lambeth, London) is a retired British cricketer, who was the first black woman to play for the England team. During her playing career, she was also captain of the Surrey women's team.

Rainford-Brent was a member of the England team that won the 9th ICC Women's Cricket World Cup held in Australia from 9–22 March 2009. England beat New Zealand by 4 wickets in the final held at North Sydney Oval on 22 March 2009. In the three months following their World Cup win, the team went on to win the final of the 2009 ICC Women's World Twenty20 (held at Lord's prior to the men's final), the Natwest One Day series 4-0 against Australia, and also retain the Women's Ashes.

Since retiring from cricket, Rainford-Brent has gone on to become a sporting executive; pundit for the BBC flagship radio programme Test Match Special (she is one of the first female expert summarisers to commentate on men's international cricket matches); and a motivational speaker. In January 2015, Rainford-Brent returned to Surrey County Cricket Club, after being appointed their first Director of Women's Cricket.

Early life[edit]

Born New Year's Eve in 1983 at St Thomas' Hospital, she was raised in Herne Hill, South-East London. Her parents are immigrants from Barbados. She was the youngest of four children; being the only girl, there were squabbles between the brothers over her name, which led her being called Ebony-Jewel Cora-Lee Camellia Rosamond Rainford-Brent to appease everyone.[1]

Her introduction to cricket came courtesy of the charity Cricket for Change, which visited her primary school when she was aged 9. She then attended the Grey Coat Hospital school in Westminster.[1] She showed considerable sporting prowess; successful at many sports including football and basketball, and represented London at the English Schools' Athletics Championships in several disciplines, but she decided to focus on cricket.

However, her promising cricket career was interrupted by a serious back injury. At age 19, she was diagnosed with two prolapsed discs and a pars defect.[2] Her injuries forced her to take a year out from her studies at University College London (UCL), and NHS doctors advised her to give up playing any form of sport.[1]

After much needed advice and support from her elder brother, she sought alternative opinions and treatment from numerous specialists. Eventually, the Talented Athletes Scholarship Scheme (TASS) programme made contact with her; they provided the necessary treatment and support to aid her recovery.[1] Just under three years later, she recovered enough to represent her country at the 2007 World series in Chennai India. She was named UCL Sportswoman of the Year in March 2007, and successfully completed her studies, graduating with a Masters in Chemistry.[3]

Cricket career[edit]

Rainford-Brent played for Surrey throughout her whole playing career: from the under 11s to the senior team. She was captain of the Surrey Women's cricket team which gained promotion to the top flight of domestic women's cricket: the LV County Championship Division One in 2011.

As well as being a member of the England Women's World Cup winning team, her international playing career highlights include, in 2009, winning Man of the Match against the West Indies, with a career best 72 not out.

She is a fully qualified cricket coach, tutor trainer and a Master Practitioner of neuro-linguistic programming (NLP).

Media work[edit]

Rainford-Brent has carried out numerous media engagements over the years. In addition to being a match host for Surrey County Cricket men's games, she has appeared as a guest presenter on BBC Newsround; also as an occasional expert and pundit on Sky Sports and BBC Breakfast. She has written numerous blogs and articles for BBC Sport, Cricket World and others. In 2012, she began to appear on BBC Test Match Special (TMS). Initially summarising on women's games, she eventually began to also contribute to domestic men's matches. She has since appeared as a TMS summariser for several men's international matches. In November 2014, it was announced that Rainford-Brent would be going to the men's 2015 Cricket World Cup as one of the team of expert summarisers for TMS. In October 2016 Rainford-Brent worked for the TMS team in both the 1st and 2nd Tests (of a two match series) between Bangladesh and England in Chittagong and Dhaka.

Cricket executive[edit]

During her playing career, Rainford-Brent was appointed as one of the first ever Chance to Shine Coaching ambassadors: delivering cricket and motivational talks to state schools and clubs throughout England and Wales.[4]

In 2011, Rainford-Brent began work as a cricket executive for the charity Lord's Taverners. She eventually became Cricket programmes manager for the charity, developing national programmes to support disadvantaged and disabled young people to access sport.

Her role as Director for Surrey Women's Cricket[5] involves working with Academy Director, Gareth Townsend and the Performance Department advising on all Women's cricket played at the club. She also works with the Surrey Cricket Board on the development of the Women's game and strategies to increase participation at all levels. In this role, she has been involved in the organisation of a women's Twenty20 match between Surrey and Middlesex in May 2015.[6] Rainford-Brent, in discussing the event, suggested that the game would be the inaugural match in what was intended to become an annual tournament.


In November 2013, Rainford-Brent was appointed as a trustee of the England and Wales Cricket Trust (EWCT). Rainford-Brent is also an ambassador for Beyond Sport. Rainford-Brent is a full member of the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC), and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA). She is also a keen drummer, golfer and budding photographer.


  1. ^ a b c d Andrew Tong (28 January 2007). "Bubbly Ebony rises after trials of body and soul". The Independent. Archived from the original on 6 July 2009. Retrieved 23 December 2014. 
  2. ^ Jamie Lillywhite (17 January 2007). "Making a name for herself". BBC Sport. Archived from the original on 27 June 2007. Retrieved 17 June 2007. 
  3. ^ "Rainford Brent wins UCL Sportswoman of the Year". ICC. 22 March 2007. Archived from the original on 26 May 2007. Retrieved 17 June 2007. 
  4. ^ "Women Get chance to shine". ECB. Archived from the original on 13 May 2008. Retrieved 14 April 2008. 
  5. ^ "Rainford-Brent appointed in new Surrey role". ECB. 4 December 2014. Retrieved 23 April 2015. 
  6. ^ Mitchell, Alison (9 May 2015). "Cricket: Women's game set for Oval lift-off". BBC. Retrieved 10 May 2015. 

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