New Delhi: India captain Virat Kohli was on Wednesday named the Leading Cricketer in the World and featured in Wisden’s Five Cricketers of the Year, by the Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack.
It was a double delight for Kohli, who will lead India’s World Cup campaign in England later this year, as he was named the best cricketer in the world for an unprecedented third year in a row.
Kohli was also among Jos Buttler and Sam Curran to be listed in Wisden’s Five Cricketers of the Year, a rare accolade which has been eluding him in his career until now.
The India skipper had a fantastic 2018 in which he racked up 2,735 international runs at 68.37 across all formats, more than 700 more than his nearest challenger, England’s Joe Root.
Kohli scored a remarkable 11 centuries in 37 innings, seven of which came on India’s tours of South Africa, England and Australia.
Smriti Mandhana was named the Leading Cricketer in women’s cricket, after the opening batsman amassed 1,291 runs across limited-overs formats, including 13 half-centuries.
Afghanistan leg-spinner Rashid Khan was named the Leading Twenty20 Cricketer for the second year in a row.
Besides Buttler and Curran, who played key roles in England’s summer campaigns; Rory Burns, Surrey’s championship-winning captain, and Tammy Beaumont, the outstanding player in another successful year for England’s women, were also named among the five cricketers of the year category.
The Cricketer of the Year awards, a tradition of the Almanack first introduced in 1889, recognise excellence of players who have performed in England during the previous summer; a player can win it only once in their lifetime.
The Leading Cricketer of the Year honours are more recent, and serve as a hat tip to international performances, with no restrictions on the number of wins.