Dubai, Feb 3 (FN Agency) The wicket-keeper batsman Rishabh Pant, one of the key architects of India’s historic win in Australia, was on Tuesday nominated for the ICC Men’s Player of the Month award for January along with England captain Joe Root and Ireland’s Paul Stirling. The International Cricket Council on Tuesday announced the nominees for the inaugural Player of the Month Awards which will recognise and celebrate the best performances from both male and female cricketers across all forms of international cricket throughout the year.
The 23-year-old Pant played two Tests against Australia where he scored a 97 at Sydney to ensure a draw before an unbeaten 89 at Brisbane that led India to a historic series-clinching win. Joe Root played two Tests against Sri Lanka, where he scored a 228 and 186 and led his team to a 2-0 Test series victory. The third nominee in the category, Paul Stirling played two ODIs against the UAE and three ODIs vs Afghanistan, where he scored three centuries. Meanwhile, among women cricketers, Pakistan Diana Baig and the South African duo of Shabnim Ismail and Marizanne Kapp were nominated for the monthly honours. Baig played three ODIs and two T20Is against South Africa, where she led the wicket-takers with nine wickets in the three-match ODI series against South Africa. Ismail also played three ODIs and two T20Is against Pakistan and took seven wickets in the victorious ODI series against Pakistan, before taking five wickets in the second T20I against the same opposition.
Her compatriot all-rounder Marizanne played two ODIs and two T20Is against Pakistan where she made 115 runs at a strike rate of 110.57 and added three wickets in the ODI series against Pakistan. ‘The three nominees for each of the categories are shortlisted based on on-field performances and overall achievements during the period of that month (the first to the last day of each calendar month,’ ICC said in a statement. Explaining the voting process, ICC said its Voting Academy, comprising prominent members of the cricket family including senior journalists, former players, and broadcasters and some members of the ICC Hall of Fame, will decide the winner.