Steyn, Johnson, Kohli, Ajmal in line for awards

Seventh ESPNcricinfo Awards, honouring the best batting and bowling performances of 2013, to be announced
ESPNcricinfo staff March 14, 2014

A celebration of excellence

Dale Steyn, Mitchell Johnson, Stuart Broad and Saeed Ajmal lead the nominations for the ESPNcricnfo Awards for 2013, to be announced on March 14.

Steyn, Broad and Johnson, the most impactful bowlers of 2013, all bagged two nominations apiece in the Test bowling category - Johnson for his Ashes-defining efforts in Brisbane and Adelaide; Steyn for two six-fors, against Pakistan and India; and Broad for his 7 for 44 against New Zealand at Lord's and the 6 for 50 that took him to a career-best match haul of 11 wickets in the Durham Ashes Test.

The ESPNcricinfo Awards honour the best batting and bowling performances of 2013 in Tests and ODIs. The winning performances are picked by a 22-strong jury that features, among others, Ian Chappell, Martin Crowe, Mark Butcher, Ian Bishop and Daryll Cullinan.

The Test batting nominations list is dominated by performances by and against Australia - including Brad Haddin's 94 in the first Test of the Ashes return series, in 2013-14; Shikhar Dhawan's 187 on debut in Mohali; MS Dhoni's double-century in Chennai; Ian Bell's hundred at Trent Bridge; and Steven Smith's Ashes-clinching century in Perth.

The third individual double-century in ODIs was scored in 2013 - by Rohit Sharma against Australia in Bangalore - and that performance features on the ODI batting shortlist, as does James Faulkner's 64 not out in Mohali in the same series.

Pakistan's Saeed Ajmal had an impressive year, which reflects in his being nominated in both Test and ODI bowling shortlists; also on both bowling shortists are Steyn and Johnson. And Dhoni, Dhawan and Virat Kohli have one performance each on both batting shortlists.

The Debutant of the Year category, which will be decided by votes from ESPNcricinfo users, features Hamish Rutherford, Bilawal Bhatti, Jason Holder, Mohammed Shami and others.

The ESPNcricinfo Awards are in their seventh year, and this year feature a special Cricketer of the Generation award, to mark 20 years of the site's existence. Shane Warne, Jacques Kallis and Sachin Tendulkar are the leading contenders for the title.

Also new this year is a Contribution to Cricket award, the recipient of which is nominated by Rahul Dravid for the honour.

Previous winners of ESPNcricinfo performance awards include Virender Sehwag, Shahid Afridi, Kumar Sangakkara, VVS Laxman and Steyn.

Posted by DarthKetan on (March 14, 2014, 15:58 GMT)

@Shane Bond: Agreed - the polls part of it does get biased, but the awards themselves are determined by the jury, so we should be good. On captaincy, yes, I don't think Ganguly should be ahead of Steve Waugh or Imran Khan....don't know enough to comment about Brearley. By the way, if you are THE Shane Bond, really enjoyed your season against Aus..wish injuries/ICL hadn't limited you...You still involved with cricket? coaching bowling?

Posted by   on (March 14, 2014, 13:48 GMT)

Johnson for demolishing England and South Africa

Posted by   on (March 14, 2014, 13:15 GMT)

@shane, you have a point mate about the comparison between Mike Bearly and Ganguly, but I think Bearly played some 30 odds test which is too less a number to call him the greatest captain. I can one can be a great captain if you have great players under your belt like Ricky Ponting had, but I call a captain a great one if he can find the greatness in average players to make them extraordinary..like Arjuna Ranatunge did in 1996 or Kapil Dev did in 1983... That's what I call a captain

Posted by   on (March 14, 2014, 13:09 GMT)

I think saeed Ajmal deserve for ODI bowling award. He is the best spinner at the moment.

Posted by   on (March 14, 2014, 12:53 GMT)

Saeed Ajmal has proved over the years that he is probably the best spinner at this time.MJ performed really well but i think 1 series isn't enough to judge a player.I am not saying MJ is not a good bowler but he has to show good performences elsewhere beside green tops and bouncy tracks.Steyn oh boy you can't forget he can also be winner but i think Steyn or Ajmal should win it.Virat Kohli is the best batsman at present but faulkner's inning was a match winning one and he batted under pressure so he should win it.

Posted by ramz30380 on (March 14, 2014, 12:50 GMT)

I am unsure about MJ as I think he was pelted right left and center by the Indian boys when they toured India for the ODIs - though an Indian fan - my vote for the best limited overs bowler will go to Saeed Ajmal - this guy has performed across the world against good oppositions!

Best bat - cant see beyond Virat Kohlli - he has had a sensational year!

Debutant of the year - Mohammed Shami - he has become India's real bowling spearhead both in SC as well as alien conditions

MS Dhoni's double-century in Chennai - created the platform for the 4-0 whitewash against the Aussies - the fact that he batted with the tail makes this double century special!

Cricketer of this Generation - SRT for the joy and hope he brought to the millions of cricket lovers in India & the world! On performance i think King Kallis is at par though!

Posted by waqas-mazhar on (March 14, 2014, 12:50 GMT)

Ajmal is a wonder of modren cric

Posted by XiTiZ_P on (March 14, 2014, 12:49 GMT)

What about ABD? He has had a great year(rather last 5 years).

Posted by Ozcricketwriter on (March 14, 2014, 12:39 GMT)

Tests: Darren Bravo (West Indies) 219 v New Zealand Mitchell Johnson (Australia) 7 for 40 v England

ODIs: Kane Williamson (New Zealand) 189 not out v England Shahid Afridi (Pakistan) 7 for 12 v West Indies

Posted by   on (March 14, 2014, 12:33 GMT)

The Test bowling category simply has to go to Mitchell Johnson for a summer of the best fast bowling you can ever see. First up he took 38 wickets at 14 against the-then world #2 side then proved the doubters wrong by taking 22 wickets at 17 against the world #1 in their home country! There can never be a more conclusive display of fast bowling skill.

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About The Awards

The ESPNcricinfo Awards recognise the best individual batting and bowling performances in cricket over the calendar year. They are voted on by an independent jury of former cricketers, commentators, and ESPNcricinfo's senior writers. Previous winners have included Dale Steyn, Virender Sehwag, Shahid Afridi and Kumar Sangakkara.

ESPNcricinfo@20 Cricketer of the Generation

A high-powered jury of cricketers, current and past, cricket writers and commentators picks the player of the last 20 years to cap ESPNcricinfo's 20th anniversary celebrations.

Contribution to Cricket award

This award, the winner of which is nominated by Rahul Dravid, recognises significant contributions to cricket in a non-playing role.

Statsguru Awards

Which batsman was the most consistent over the year? Who was the best bowler in the third and fourth innings? The Statsguru Awards go beyond runs scored, wickets taken, or averages, and are the result of detailed data analyses of performances. ESPNcricinfo's ball-by-ball data analysis of every international game has answers to these queries and more.