Kane Williamson, Mohammad Rizwan among nominees for the ICC Player of the Year award

Kane Williamson, Mohammad Rizwan among nominees for the ICC Player of the Year award

In T20Is in 2021, Rizwan smashed 1326 runs from 29 matches at an average of 73.66 and a strike rate of 134.89.

Mohammad Rizwan
Mohammad Rizwan. (Photo by ASIF HASSAN/AFP via Getty Images)

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has put forth the nominees for the ICC Player of the Year award on Friday, December 31. Pakistan’s Mohammad Rizwan and Shaheen Afridi, England’s Joe Root and New Zealand’s Kane Williamson are the contenders, who will be fighting for the award.

Rizwan has had a stupendous year in international cricket, having scored 1915 runs from 44 games at an average of 56.32 with two centuries to show for his efforts. The youngster also performed his wicketkeeping duties with precision, having affected 56 dismissals.

In T20Is, Rizwan put forward his A-game, smashing 1326 runs from 29 matches at an incredible average of 73.66 and a strike rate of 134.89. The 29-year-old Rizwan didn’t flatter to deceive in Test cricket, scoring 455 runs from nine matches at a decent enough average of 45.50.

Rizwan’s national teammate, Shaheen Shah Afridi, had a tremendous year as well. The spell he bowled against India in the T20 World Cup 2021 would be remembered by the cricketing fraternity for the years to come. Pakistan went on to win the match by 10 wickets.

Shaheen picked up seven wickets from six games in the mega event where Pakistan bowed out after the semi-final. In 36 international matches in 2021, Afridi picked up 78 wickets at an average of 22.20. The left-arm speedster also accounted for 47 wickets in nine Tests this year.

Kane Williamson performing well for New Zealand

Williamson has also done brilliantly for the Black Caps in 2021. Back in June, he guided New Zealand to glory in the 2019-21 World Test Championship final. The Kiwis defeated Virat Kohli’s India in the final at the Rose Bowl in Southampton. He also guided the national team to the final of the T20 World Cup.

Kane has had his injury concerns in recent times, but overall, he has made quite a significant amount of impact in 2021. In 16 international matches this year, the Tauranga-born has scored 693 runs at an average of 43.31 with one century.

Root, on the other hand, has scored 1855 international runs in 18 matches at an average of 58.37 with six tons to his name. He is currently the leading run-scorer in the Ashes that England are trailing 0-3 following losses in Brisbane, Adelaide and Melbourne.