International Cricket Council crowned Australia captain Steve Smith as cricketer of the year and Test cricketer of the year.
Steve Smith became the fourth Australia player after Ricky Ponting,Mitchell Johnson and Michael Clarke to win the prestigious Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy.
He also became the seventh player after Rahul Dravid (2004), Jacques Kallis (2005), Ricky Ponting (2006), Kumar Sangakkara (2012), Michael Clarke (2013) and Mitchell Johnson (2014) to bag both awards in the same year.
The voting period ran from 18 September 2014 to 13 September 2015 and the 26-year-old Australian captain has finished as the leading run-scorer in Tests. He scored 1,734 runs in 25 innings (13 matches), at a stunning average of 82.57 which includes seven centuries. The Australia skipper has shown his magic in ODI too by scoring 1,249 runs at an average of near 60 in 26 matches, with four centuries and eight half-centuries.
Talking to press Smith said, “Given that there are so many great players around the world, I’m incredibly honoured to receive these awards. While team success is always my number one motivation, awards like this are very special. I’m thrilled and very proud to receive them.
“I will look back on 2015 with mixed feelings. Winning the ICC Cricket World Cup at home was a career highlight, and being appointed captain is a great honour, but the disappointment of losing the Ashes remains.
“To be the best team that we can be, we have to become better at winning away from home, and that remains our motivation heading into 2016.”
— ICC Media (@ICCMediaComms) December 23, 2015
AB de Villiers was named the ICC ODI Cricketer of the Year for the second successive year. Earlier in December, de Villiers, who also picked up the award in 2010, was named the captain of the ICC ODI Team of the Year. The South African ODI skipper, who led his team to the semifinals of the ICC mega event in March, scored 1,265 runs in 20 innings during the voting period, at an average of just over 79 and an astonishing strike-rate of 128.4.
AB de Villiers expressed his joy by saying, “It is an honour to be named as the ICC ODI Cricketer of the Year for 2015. It’s certainly been a memorable year with many highlights but a lot of disappointments as well. If I was to look back, the century I scored against the West Indies at the Wanderers will probably go down as the most memorable knocks of the year. In saying that, centuries count for nothing if the team isn’t winning, so hopefully in the future I can contribute to many more Proteas wins.”
Fast bowler Josh Hazlewood won the ICC Emerging Cricketer of the Year award and South Africa’s T20 skipper Faf du Plessis bagged the T20 Performance of the Year award for 119 runs scored on on 59 balls against the West Indies in the second T20 at Johannesburg, in January 2015.
ICC Cricketer of the Year (Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy) – Steven Smith
Test Cricketer of the Year – Steven Smith
ODI Cricketer of the Year – AB de Villiers
Women’s ODI Cricketer of the Year – Meg Lanning
Women’s T20I Cricketer of the Year – Stafanie Taylor
T20I Performance of the Year – Faf du Plessis
Emerging Cricketer of the Year – Josh Hazlewood
Associate/Affiliate Cricketer of the Year – Khurram Khan
Spirit of Cricket Award – Brendon McCullum
Umpire of the Year (David Shepherd Trophy) – Richard Kettleborough