Claire Taylor’s first One-Day International appearance at Lord’s in 2001 saw her top score with 50 not out against Australia.
The 156 not out she made against India in her next innings at the Ground remains the highest ODI score ever made at the Home of Cricket by a batsman of either sex. Those two ‘red inkers’ meant that when she was dismissed for 17 against South Africa in 2008 (having come to the crease for a late thrash after England’s openers put on 268 for the first wicket), her ODI average at Lord’s was a remarkable 223.00.
Perhaps the most notable thing about her innings of 156 not out against India was that she scored it at a rate faster than a run a ball, but only struck nine boundaries. Her remaining 120 runs were all run. England’s innings of 253 for 3 only included three other boundaries, together with seven wides. The entire effort was a triumph of running between the wickets, despite the early hiccup that saw captain Charlotte Edwards run out without scoring. Taylor shared partnerships of 123 with Laura Newton and 127 with Jenny Gunn, who was dismissed off the last ball of the innings. India in response could only reach 153 for 7.
By the time her 13-year international career came to an end in 2011, Taylor’s ODI average at Lord’s still stood at a healthy 79.00. In all, she scored eight ODI and four Test hundreds in a stellar career that brought World Cup and World T20 wins, both in 2009, together with the honour of being the first woman chosen as one of Wisden’s Five Cricketers of the Year. Since 2019, she has chaired MCC’s Cricket committee.