Dhoni leads ICC's one-day Team of the Year
India's MS Dhoni has been named captain of the ICC's ODI Team of the Year for 2011-12. This is the fifth year in a row that Dhoni has made the team.
His India team-mates, Virat Kohli and Gautam Gambhir, are also in, with Alastair Cook, Kumar Sangakkara and Michael Clarke making up the rest of the batting. The bowlers include Morne Morkel, Steven Finn, Lasith Malinga and Saeed Ajmal, with Shahid Afridi filling the allrounder's spot. Shane Watson was named 12th man.
Cook, Sangakkara, Clarke and Ajmal were also named in the ICC's Test Team of the Year for 2011-12. It is the first time that Ajmal, Kohli and Finn are featuring in the one-day team.
Several South African batsmen who are near the top of the ODI rankings - such as Hashim Amla (currently No. 1) and AB de Villiers (No. 3) - are likely to have missed out because South Africa played very few ODIs between August 4, 2011 and August 6, 2012, the assessment period for picking the team.*
The team was announced on the eve of the ICC's annual awards function that will be held in Colombo on Saturday. It was picked by a panel consisting of former players: West Indies batsmen Clive Lloyd and Carl Hooper, Sri Lanka opener Marvan Attapatu, Australia allrounder Tom Moody and England Women's captain Clare Connor. The same panel had picked the Test Team of the Year last month.
Lloyd, who was the chairman of the selection panel, said: "This team, along with the Test Team of the Year was extremely difficult to decide upon. We feel the side has strength to bat well down the order, while also having a good variety for any type of conditions when it comes to its bowling attack."
Dave Richardson, the ICC's chief executive, emphasised the team's strength. "I think we can safely say that this is one of the strongest ODI Team of the Year selections ever in the awards history," Richardson said.
* September 14 17.20GMT: This story has been updated to include details on South Africa's batsmen