Women’s cricket will be included at this year’s ICC Awards for the first time, it was announced today.
The Women’s Cricketer of the Year, as chosen by a voting academy of 12 leading former players and influential figures in the women’s game including members of the media, will be named during the ceremony, which this year will take place in Mumbai on 23 October.
Commenting on the award, ICC Chief Executive Officer Malcolm Speed said: “The decision to include the Women’s Cricketer of the Year at the ICC Awards is a natural move following the integration of the International Women’s Cricket Council with the ICC last year.
“It will serve as a great opportunity to recognise the outstanding achievements of the leading female players who are nominated, and the resultant profile it will give women’s cricket can only benefit this already rapidly growing sector of the game.”
The women’s voting academy includes six national captains among a total of seven former players as well as female journalists and commentators and a leading administrator.
They will sift through two nominations from each of Australia, England, India, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Pakistan and Sri Lanka and one nomination from Ireland (which opted not to submit a second name) before casting their votes on the relative merits of those players’ performances between 1 August 2005 and 8 August 2006.
Each academy member will cast three votes for the player they believe to have performed best over the year, two votes for the next best and one vote for their third preference.
South Africa and the West Indies will not submit nominations as neither side played international cricket during the voting period.
The voting academy will be made up of the following individuals:
Janette Brittin – Former England batsman. No player in the history of the game has played more Tests (27), scored more Test runs (1935) or more Test hundreds (5).
Sonali Chander – Leading Indian media commentator on cricket through her appearances on ND-TVDiana Edulji – Former India captain. She holds India’s record for most Test wickets (61) and played in India’s first ever Test match, against the West Indies in Bangalore in 1976.
Gwen Herat – President of the Women’s Cricket Association of Sri Lanka.
Rachel Heyhoe-Flint – Former England captain, only Jan Brittin has scored more Test runs (1594); she was one of the instigators of the first Women’s World Cup.
Debbie Hockley – Former New Zealand captain who was the first female to play 100 ODIs and score 4000 ODI runs. Played in five Women’s World Cups and in 1997 was named as NZC’s Player of the Year, the first time a woman won the country’s top cricketing honour.
Lyn Larsen – Former Australia captain. A batting all-rounder, Lynn was part of the side that won the 1989 Women’s World Cup. After retiring as a player she managed the Australia side in series against Pakistan, England, South Africa and New Zealand.
Lesley Murdoch – Former New Zealand captain whose career spanned four decades. Lesley also represented her country in field hockey in the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles.
Kass Naidoo – South African television commentator on cricket and the face of SABC’s cricket coverage.
Donna Symmonds – A lawyer from Bridgetown, Barbados, Donna is a world-renowned expert on the game and has worked as a broadcaster for more than 20 years.
Jenny Thompson – Journalist and assistant editor of Cricinfo.com.
Sharon Tredrea – Former Australia captain who led the side to victory in the 1989 Women’s World Cup final. An all-rounder, she represented her country in four Women’s World Cups.
This year’s ICC Awards will be the third running of the event with the previous occasions taking place in London (2004) and Sydney (2005).
The ceremony also features awards to the leading men’s players including the Sir Garfield Sobers Award for the Cricketer of the Year, the leading Test and ODI Players of the Year, the Emerging Player of the Year and the Umpire of the Year.
The ICC Awards are presented by Hyundai in association with LG and FICA (the Federation of International Cricketers’ Associations).Further announcements concerning this year’s ICC Awards will be made as the date of the ceremony draws closer.