County Championship: Essex spinner Simon Harmer named PCA Player of the Month for June

PUBLISHED: 13:01 06 July 2017

Simon Harmer in bowling action for Essex against Middlesex (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Simon Harmer in bowling action for Essex against Middlesex (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo +44 1376 553468

South African impressed throughout June to earn accolade

Simon Harmer, the Essex and former South Africa off-spinner has been voted the Professional Cricketers’ Association Player of the Month for June.

Harmer was shortlisted having amassed 146 points in the PCA Most Valuable Player Rankings during June.

The off-spinner was the landslide winner of an online poll of fans on the PCA and Sky Sports websites, beating the Nottinghamshire pair of Samit Patel and Steven Mullaney and Somerset all-rounder Lewis Gregory.

“Thank you very much to everyone who voted for me, it’s been a pretty surreal couple of weeks with a couple of great wins for the Eagles. This is just the cherry on top so thank you,” Harmer said.

The shortlist was produced via the MVP Rankings system, an innovation which provides a more rigorous analysis of player performances than traditional batting and bowling averages.

The rankings were designed by the players to identify the match-winners and key influencers of matches throughout the domestic season.

The formula gives full credit to those players whose performances improve their team’s chances of winning. Points are accrued for all runs scored and wickets taken, these are then adjusted within the context of the match to take into account strike rates and economy rates.

The formula also takes into account conditions, quality of opposition, captaincy and strike-rates as well as runs scored and wickets taken with the player who tops the overall PCA MVP Rankings at the end of the season, receiving a £10,000 prize and a trophy.

Harmer follows Gloucestershire seamer Liam Norwell (April) and Surrey’s former Sri Lanka batsman Kumar Sangakkara (May) as a PCA Player of the Month.

The South African took Essex to the top of the Specsavers County Championship First Division by taking 28 wickets in successive victories over Warwickshire and defending champions Middlesex at Chelmsford.

He took 14-128 against Warwickshire, the best match figures for Essex since 1985, including 8-36 in the second innings.

Harmer’s career-best lasted only a week as he took 9-95 to spin Middlesex to defeat. His figures were the best for Essex since Mark Ilott took 9-19 against Northamptonshire at Luton in 1995.

The 28-year-old’s two 14 wicket match hauls earned him 125 of his monthly haul of 146 rankings points and took him to third in the overall PCA MVP behind Kent all-rounder Darren Stevens and Sangakkara.

Harmer took 20 wickets in five Tests two years ago and joined Essex as a Kolpak signing this season.

The PCA MVP Rankings can be viewed here.

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