India’s swashbuckling batter Harmanpreet Kaur demonstrated her batting skills at the World Cup brought her the women’s batting performance of the year honor, while wrist spinners Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal were recognized for their breathtaking performances among the men in the ESPNCricinfo annual Awards.
Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal bags prizes in ESPNCricinfo awards Indian cricketers were picked for three out of the 12 awards on offer, the most by any nation. Harmanpreet’s career-best 171 against Australia during the World Cup 2017, where India ended as runners-up, was chosen as the women’s batting performance of the year.
Chahal, the young wrist-spinner, was awarded the T20 bowling performance of the year award for his magical 6 for 25 in the third T20I against England in Bengaluru. His wrist spin partner, Kuldeep Yadav, who came into the limelight for his performance in the Dharamsala Test against Australia, and is now an integral part of the national squad, was named as the debutant of the year for his 43 wickets across three formats in 2017.
This is the second consecutive year that ESPNcricinfo has had awards for batting and bowling in women’s cricket across all three international formats. The Captain of the Year award went to a female player for the first time as Heather Knight won the title for her leadership in guiding England to wins in nine out of 12 ODIs, including the World Cup title.
Australia’s Steven Smith was also among the winners for his brilliant performances. His 109 runs versus India that led to Australia’s win in the first Border-Gavaskar Test in Pune was voted the Test batting performance of the year.
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Smith’s team-mate Nathan Lyon had the best Test figures by a touring bowler in India, for his spell of eight for 50 against India in the second Test, in Bengaluru. This performance won him the Test bowling performance of the year award.
The winners were selected by an 18-member independent jury, including former cricket legends such as Ian Chappell, Ramiz Raja, Courtney Walsh, Mark Butcher, Daryll Cullinan, Russel Arnold, and former umpire Simon Taufel among others.