The votes have been counted and the results of the Cricket World Awards for 2013 are in. It is India who dominate this year’s list of winners, with 2013 seeing them win Test series against Australia and the West Indies as well as lift the ICC Champions Trophy.
Virat Kohli is rewarded for his strong performances in both the Test and One-Day International arenas by picking up the Player of the Year and Batsman of the Year gongs. Dale Steyn, meanwhile, earns the Proteas the Bowler of the Year award after helping them win Test series against New Zealand, Pakistan and India.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni continues the India theme by comfortably topping the Wicket-keepers poll, with India, once again, streets ahead of the opposition to be named Team of the Year.
Player of the Year: Virat Kohli (India)
Kohli sees off the challenge from Ashes-winning captain Michael Clarke by fewer than five per cent to take the honours after a year during which he averaged over 50 in both Test and ODI cricket. His most recent Test series against world number ones South Africa saw him score 272 runs from the two Tests.
Meanwhile, South Africa talisman AB de Villiers can count himself a little unlucky to earn only seven per cent of the vote after averaging 77.75 in Tests and 50.56 in ODIs. Sachin Tendulkar takes four per cent of the vote in his final year of international cricket, with the batsmen again taking most of the plaudits - South Africa’s Vernon Philander and Pakistan’s Saeed Ajmal the top bowlers with only two per cent of the vote each.
Batsman of the Year: Virat Kohli (India)
Ian Bell’s starring role in England’s home Ashes success sees him run Kohli closest, but still earns him less than half the Indian’s vote share. Bell managed to average over 40 in both Test and ODI cricket, despite the recent Ashes series bringing the Test average down considerably.
Clarke and de Villiers are third and fourth, with Rohit Sharma’s strong recent showing for India against the West Indies seeing him in joint fifth with South Africa’s Mr. Consistent Hashim Amla and Pakistan’s Mr. Consistent Misbah-ul-Haq. Australian fast-bowler Mitchell Johnson gains one vote; presumably due to his useful cameos in the recent Ashes series.
Bowler of the Year: Dale Steyn (South Africa)
Despite not earning a single vote in the Player of the Year vote, Steyn romps to victory as Bowler of the Year with over a third of the vote. His name is never far from people’s minds when great bowlers are discussed, and it is easy to see why as he took 51 wickets at the remarkable average of 17.66 in Test cricket in 2013 and 27 at 15.85 in ODIs.
Pakistani mystery spinner Saeed Ajmal is a distant second after taking well over 100 international wickets, with Philander third and Ashes winner Johnson gaining only nine per cent of the vote despite ending the year with a Test bowling average of just 17.52.
Wicket-keeper of the Year: MS Dhoni (India)
Just as Steyn retains the award he shared with James Anderson last year, so Dhoni retains the award that he won alongside Matt Prior for his 2012 efforts. After taking just over a third of the vote last time around, Dhoni sees his share rocket up to 63 per cent after India’s strong year. Averages of 45.9 and an incredible 62.75 in Test and ODI cricket go with 56 dismissals from those formats.
Brad Haddin is the only one who runs him remotely close. The veteran Australian gloveman is rewarded with second place after being some people’s man of the series during his side’s recent Ashes thrashing of England.
Team of the Year: India
India see off holders South Africa to take top honours as they are richly rewarded for a 4-0 Test win over Australia and an ICC Champions Trophy success. The Proteas had another solid year to cement their place as undisputed number ones in Test cricket, but will have been disappointed at again missing out on silverware in England. Australia pip fellow Ashes winners England into third, while England Women take two per cent of the vote following their Ashes triumph this summer.
Moments of Year:
Retirements were the dominant theme as the Cricket World voters cast their minds back for the most memorable moments of 2013. Two titans of the game - Sachin Tendulkar and Jacques Kallis - announced that they were calling it quits in at least one form of the game, with Sachin’s last Test against the West Indies in November when he scored 74 by far the most popular memory from the past 12 months.
India’s win in the ICC Champions Trophy final also features prominently, as does England’s home Ashes win. Stuart Broad features twice for bowling spells at Lord’s against New Zealand and Durham against Australia, while Sarah Taylor’s spectacular catch in this year’s Women’s Ashes is one person’s pick.
© Cricket World 2014