Rohit Sharma becomes the third Indian to win the 'ICC ODI Cricketer of the Year' award

Rohit Sharma becomes the third Indian to win the ‘ICC ODI Cricketer of the Year’ award

Rohit joins the elite list.

Rohit Sharma of India (Photo by Henry Browne/Getty Images)

While the entire world was rejoicing at the prospect of a new year and a new decade on December 31st, 2019, the same can’t be said about Rohit Sharma. If Sharma had an option then he wouldn’t have allowed the year 2019 to pass by. Such was the impact that the Indian vice-captain had throughout the erstwhile year where he emerged as the best opening batsman across all the formats of the game.

And, the accolades are starting to come in. In an era where Virat Kohli is an undisputed champion, especially in the 50-over format of the game, you will have to do something outrageous, to pip the legendary batsman when it comes to winning any accolades in One-day cricket. And, Rohit Sharma did just that throughout the year 2019 and has deservingly been awarded ‘ICC ODI Cricketer of the Year’, on Wednesday.

Sharma had stupendous 2019 where he broke a plethora of records in all formats of the game, especially ODI cricket. In 27 ODI innings that Sharma played last year, the swashbuckling opener racked up 1490 runs at an average of 57.30 with seven hundreds and six half-centuries. Five of those centuries came in the World Cup- which also happens to be the most in a single mega event.

Rohit Sharma joins Kohli and Dhoni in an elite list

Before Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli won the accolade thrice- 2012, 2017 and 2018- while MS Dhoni was the first-ever Indian cricketer to achieve the feat when he awarded as the Best ODI Player of the Year for consecutive seasons in 2008 and 2009. Interestingly, the race to finish at the top of the pile as far as most runs in 2019 is concerned was between three players until the last ODI of the India-West Indies series.

But, Rohit’s nonchalant 157 eventually sealed the deal for the Mumbaikar. He had reflected on the year during the post-match presentation party where he had said, “Extremely grateful for the year I had, the World Cup win would have been nice. The team gelled together collectively well and every individual stepped up which is a good sign. There is no way I’m stopping here and there’s an exciting year coming up and I’m looking forward to it.

“I understand my batting really well and knowing the game plan you want to execute is very, very important. The challenge will come once we start travelling, we want to win games and want to stay on top.”