MS Dhoni, the India captain, has won the ICC Spirit of Cricket Award for his decision to recall Ian Bell after his controversial run-out during the Trent Bridge Test. Dhoni was unavailable to collect his award, though the Indian team was present in England.
"While the initial appeal and umpire decision were correct to the letter of the law, the decision by Mahendra and his team to withdraw the appeal shows great maturity," ICC chief executive Haroon Lorgat said. "To see players and officials uphold the great spirit of cricket, which has underpinned the game for more than a century, is very special."
Bell hit the last ball before tea on the third day in Nottingham towards the boundary. Having wrongly thought it had gone for four, Bell left his crease and headed towards the pavilion assuming the session was over and the ball dead. Meanwhile the ball, which had not reached the rope and therefore was still in play, was returned to the middle, the bails removed and Bell was correctly given run-out.
Upon reflection during the tea interval and following a request from the England team, Dhoni withdrew the appeal and recalled Bell thus turning boos into cheers from the Nottingham crowd.
Dhoni's gesture was voted as the winner ahead of that of South Africa's Jacques Kallis, who walked on two occasions during the World Cup after clarifying with opposition fielders directly that they had caught the ball cleanly, rather than waiting for the umpires to decide. Last year, the award had gone to the New Zealand team.