Allan Border Medal 2012 February 27, 2012

Quiney and Warner win awards

The Victoria batsman Rob Quiney has been rewarded for two strong seasons by being named Australia's Domestic Player of the Year at the Allan Border Medal night in Melbourne. And Australia's occasional vice-captain David Warner has taken home the Bradman Young Cricketer of the Year title, a surprise only in that he was even eligible for the prize, which has typically been handed to a player still establishing himself.

But the major state award went to Quiney, 29, who must be starting to feature in discussions at the national selection table having become a consistent performer for Victoria and the Melbourne Stars. During the voting period, which ran from February 9 last year until February 11 this year, Quiney was easily the leading scorer across all formats, with 1640 runs at 44.32, ahead of the second-placed Marcus North with 1337 runs.

James Faulkner was the leading wicket taker during the same time-frame, with 71 victims at 24.62, and he finished second to Quiney in the polling, a system in which all contracted players cast a vote to judge the best players across all three domestic formats. Quiney received 52% of the vote, well ahead of Faulkner on 12% and the third-placed Matthew Wade on 10%.

Quiney is second only to Liam Davis on the Sheffield Shield run tally this summer, with 750 runs at an average of 50, and he also finished second in the Shield last season, to Mark Cosgrove. He was also among the top ten run scorers during the Ryobi Cup and the Big Bash League this season and his consistency across all formats has been impressive.

Quiney is the first man to take the domestic award while playing the full qualifying period for Victoria - the batsman Michael Klinger won in 2009 having switched from Victoria to South Australia mid-year. Victoria also provided the runner-up in the Bradman Young Cricketer of the Year award this season, with James Pattinson gaining 20% of the votes behind Warner's 29%. The Redbacks batsman Tom Cooper was third with 16%.

To win the award, a player must be aged 24 or younger at the beginning the voting period - Warner turned 25 in October. Players also need to have appeared in fewer than 10 first-class matches at the start of the voting period. Warner had played four, and after his rapid rise into the Test side it is easy to forget that he was not a regular in the New South Wales Shield team until the end of last summer.

Across all formats, Warner was a clear front-runner in the run tally among contenders, with 1587 runs at an average of 69, while the second-placed Glenn Maxwell made 971. The leading wicket takers were Faulkner and Nathan Coulter-Nile, but the popular vote allowed Pattinson to swoop past them into second place.

For the fourth consecutive year, Shelley Nitschke was named the Women's International Player of the Year, a feat made all the more remarkable because she retired seven months ago. Nitschke, 35, stepped down last July but the lopsided schedule meant she still played 13 of the 19 completed matches during the voting period.

Across ODI and T20 internationals, Nitschke scored 285 runs and collected 21 wickets, and she picked up the prize with 33 votes ahead of Lisa Sthalekar's 31 votes. Alex Blackwell finished third with 26 votes.

Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

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  • Roo on March 1, 2012, 6:39 GMT

    Seems a very weak & biased way of selecting who the best player is - surely the umpires & media representatives would have a more balanced view... Too much of an "old boys" system for my liking... I don't have any problems with the winner, but getting the most runs or wkts doesn't prove you are the best under all conditions or whether you contributed to the team winning their matches... Its those who lift when the going is tough get my vote...

  • Andrew on February 28, 2012, 0:34 GMT

    @dms1972 - yes I agree. Although I suppose there are a lot of cricketers who make FC/professional levels at an older age then in other sports. Maybe given the Futures League was U23s, the extra year allows them to have 1 year to find their way? Dunno, but I was surprised that Warner was eligible.

  • Scott on February 27, 2012, 23:07 GMT

    Yes, it is quite weird how Warner got that award. I mean, he's been vice-captain of the ODI team for a few matches while Watson was injured. Surely they will have to change the rules.

  • Damien on February 27, 2012, 13:33 GMT

    Surely, the age for the Young Cricketer of the Year Award needs to be lowered by at least a year.

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