WORLD Cup winners Anya Shrubsole, Heather Knight and Fran Wilson will once again represent Western Storm as they look to retain their title in the 2018 KIA Super League.

The England and Wales Cricket Board has announced the England player allocations for the third year of the competition and Anya, Heather and Fran will be staying with Western Storm.

Heather captained Western Storm to the Kia Super League title last year and also skippered England to win the ICC Women’s World Cup.

Heather is delighted to be staying with the current champions.

“I’m really pleased to be a part of Western Storm again in 2018,” she said.

“We’ve created something really special over the last two years and I know that everyone involved will be giving absolutely everything in order to retain our title.

“A huge amount of work goes on behind the scenes as well as on the pitch and everyone connected to Western Storm played their part in last year’s success and I can wait to meet up with everyone again.

“This year’s tournament will be bigger than ever and that will make it much tougher, but I believe that we’ve got the quality in the squad to be successful again.

“There’s been an amazing team spirit right throughout the squad for the last two years which has helped us to succeed and I’m sure that 2018 will be no different.

“Myself, Anya and Fran have all got links to the South West and the amount of support we’ve had at our home games has been tremendous.

“Hopefully we can thank all those Storm Troopers in the best possible way and win the trophy for them again.”

Kia Super League general manager Jo Kirk said: “The latest player movements are to ensure the best balance between the six sides and to maintain a fair and competitive competition with the over-arching principle of trying to ensure a best versus best competition.

“We want the Kia Super League to continue to go from strength to strength in its third year.

“Attendances rose by 44 per cent last year and we’re looking forward to even more fans attending games this summer, hopefully culminating in a sold-out Finals Day down in Hove.”

The third year of the Kia Super League will start on July 22 with all six teams in action.

Western Storm will begin the defence of their title at the Cooper Associates County Ground in Taunton against Yorkshire Diamonds live on Sky.

Storm will be playing at the Cheltenham Cricket Festival for the first time on July 26 and will once again battle it out against the Southern Vipers at the Brightside Ground, Bristol on the August 11.

All six teams in this year’s competition will be aiming to reach the Finals Day which will be held at the 1st Central County Ground in Hove on Bank Holiday Monday, August 27.