New Zealand become first team to reach WTC final at Lord's
2 Feb 2021
The International Cricket Council (ICC) has nominated Rishabh Pant, Joe Root and Paul Stirling for the inaugural ICC Player of the Month Awards which they say recognises and celebrate the best performances across all forms of international cricket in a calendar month. This nomination process has considered performances put in players across men and women cricket in the month of January 2021.
Rishabh Pant was at his dominating best in Australia and thwarted the Australian bowling line up with his powerful stroke play. He first threatened to chase a mountainous target set by the hosts in Australia but perished three short of 100 at 97 and followed it up with another unbeaten 89 that helped India defeat Australia at the Gabba. He was also adjudged man of the match in the final Test of the series that India won 2-1.
Joe Root was batting at the peak of his prowess on the tour of Sri Lanka as he piled on one double century and a big hundred against the hosts. All English batsmen failed to make big runs while Root kept on putting pressure on the home spinners Lasith Embuldeniya and Dilruwan Perera.
Another nominee among Men, Paul Stirling scored three centuries in five ODIs against the UAE and Afghanistan. He had scored 131 not out against UAE in the early part of January 2021 and followed it up with two consecutive hundreds against Afghanistan in the last half of the month.
In women's cricket, the ICC has nominated Pakistan's Diana Baig, South Africa’s Shabnim Ismail and Marizanne Kapp for the Player of the Month award.
Baig played three ODIs and two T20Is against South Africa and dominated the bowling charts taking nine wickets in the three-match ODI series against South Africa.
She was closely followed by Shabnim Ismail who also played three ODIs and two T20Is against Pakistan and helped South Africa win the ODI series against Pakistan by picking up seven wickets.
Another nominee, Marizanne Kapp played two ODIs and two T20Is against Pakistan where she made 115 runs at a strike rate of 110.57 and scalped three wickets in the ODI series against Pakistan.
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