Dhoni nominated in two categories for ICC awards

September 8th, 2008 - 6:07 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Sep 8 (IANS) India’s one-day cricket captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni is in line for dual honours in the International Cricket’s Council’s (ICC) annual awards scheduled to be held in Dubai Wednesday.Dhoni, who currently sits at the top of ODI batsmen rankings, has been nominated in two categories — ODI Player of the Year and Twenty20 International Performance of the Year, ICC announced here Monday.

Besides Dhoni, the other Indians in the fray for the awards are Sachin Tendulkar (ODI Player of the Year award), Yuvraj Singh (T20 International performance of the Year) and Ishant Sharma (Emerging Player of the Year).

West Indian Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Sri Lanka captain Mahela Jayawardena and South Africa’s Dale Steyn have been nominated for both the Cricketer of the Year and Test Player of the Year categories in the fifth edition of the awards.

The other nominee for the Cricketer of the Year is South Africa captain Graeme Smith (1172 runs) while his team-mate Jacques Kallis features in the Test category as the top scorer with 1268 runs in 14 Tests.

Chanderpaul has scored 819 runs in eight Test for the calendar year (Aug 9, 2007 to Aug 12, 2008) and has the top average in both forms of the game. Jayawerdena has scored 1127 runs in 10 Tests while South African speedster Steyn has 86 scalps to his name in just 14 Tests. None of the four players shortlisted for the Cricketer of the Year Award has previously lifted the prestigious Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy.

The dashing Dhoni has had an awesome season where he led India to victory in the inaugural T20 World Cup in England, took the reins of India’s ODI team with aplomb, led the team to ODI series wins away from home in Australia and Sri Lanka. All this while he inspired the team raising his own performance with the bat that saw him dislodge South African Graeme Smith from the top spot in ODI rankings. Dhoni scored 1298 in 39 matches at an average of 49.

Dhoni will be up against teammate Sachin Tendulkar, the top scorer in ODIs for the calendar year with 1310 runs, in the ODI Player of Year award category which also features Nathan Bracken and Mohammad Yousuf. Yousuf has the best batting average of 59 while Bracken is the highest wicket-taker with 34 scalps.

In the T20 International Performance of the Year award, Dhoni finds himself alongside team mate Yuvraj, who had a successful T20 World Cup in South Africa and hit those memorable six sixes in one over. Australian Brett Lee and West Indian Chris Gayle are the two other contenders.

The Emerging Player of the year award has India’s new pace sensation Ishant, Sri Lanka’s freak spinner Ajantha Mendis, England’s Stuart Broad and South African Morne Morkel as nominees. Ishant, who impressed with his bowling in the away series against Australia has 23 wickets in nine Tests while Mendis, who made India dance to his tune in his debut series, has 26 wickets in three Tests and 33 in 13 ODIs.

Top cricketing nations like Australia, South Africa, England and India are missing from the Spirit of Cricket award category. Bangladesh, New Zealand, Sri Lanka and West Indies have been chosen as nominees.

Auatralian Simon Taufel will be vying for an unprecedented fifth Umpire of the Year award. He has been nominated alongside compatriot Steve Davis, England’s Mark Benson, Pakistan’s Aleem Dar, and South African Rudi Koertzen in the category.

For the Women’s Cricketer of the Year award Australian Lisa Sthalekar, Claire Taylor of England, New Zealand’s Nicola Browne and England captain Charlotte Edwards have been nominated.

Thomas Odoyo of Kenya is aiming for back-to-back success in the Associate Player of the Year category, but faces opposition from team-mate Alex Obanda, Ryan ten Doeschate of the Netherlands and Niall O’Brien of Ireland.

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