Ponting in line for ICC's top award

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Ricky Ponting could become the first player to win the Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy twice after he was shortlisted with three other players for the ICC's major prize. Ponting will compete with Kevin Pietersen, Mohammad Yousuf and Shivnarine Chanderpaul for the Cricketer of the Year award, which will be announced in Johannesburg on Monday.

The four players were selected from an extended list of 12, while the nominations for the Test Player of the Year and ODI Player of the Year have also been cut to four. Ponting is the only man with a chance of winning all three titles, which was a reward for another superb year in which he made 1185 ODI runs at 51.52 and 576 Test runs at 82.28. He also led Australia to triumphs in the World Cup, Champions Trophy and the Ashes.

Pietersen, Yousuf and Muttiah Muralitharan are also up for the Test player award, with Yousuf's record of five centuries and 944 runs at 94.40 from his six Tests making him hard to beat. However, Muralitharan had a stellar year with 43 wickets at 11.60 and Pietersen scored 1255 runs at 57.04.

The ODI title is an Australian-dominated affair with Ponting, Glenn McGrath, Matthew Hayden and Jacques Kallis the four nominees. Hayden's remarkable return to the Australian line-up brought 1368 runs at 62.18, Kallis scored 1149 runs at 60.47, while McGrath enjoyed his farewell year with 50 wickets at 19.34.

The nominations

Cricketer of the Year
Shivnarine Chanderpaul (WI)
Kevin Pietersen (Eng)
Ricky Ponting (Aus)
Mohammed Yousuf (Pak)

Test Player
Muttiah Muralitharan (SL)
Kevin Pietersen (Eng)
Ricky Ponting (Aus)
Mohammad Yousuf (Pak)

ODI Player
Matthew Hayden (Aus)
Jacques Kallis (SA)
Glenn McGrath (Aus)
Ricky Ponting (Aus)

Emerging Player
Ravinder Bopara (Eng)
Shakib Al Hasan (Bang)
Shaun Tait (Aus)
Ross Taylor (NZ)

Captain of the Year
Mahela Jayawardene (SL)
Ricky Ponting (Aus)

Associate ODI Player of the Year
Ashish Bagai (Can)
Thomas Odoyo (Ken)
Ryan ten Doeschate (Neth)
Steve Tikolo (Ken)

Umpire of the Year
Mark Benson
Steve Bucknor
Simon Taufel

Women's Cricketer of the Year
Jhulan Goswami (Ind)
Lisa Sthalekar (Aus)
Claire Taylor (Eng)

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Will Pakistan Premier League gain success just like Indian Premier League ?