Raza nominated for ICC’s men’s T20I cricketer of the year award

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Sikandar Raza celebrates after taking a wicket at the ongoing T20 World Cup in Australia

Zimbabwe cricket star allrounder Sikandar Raza has been nominated for the ICC men’s T20I cricketer of the year award.

Raza is the only Zimbabwean player to get the nomination alongside Indian star Suryakumar Yadav, Pakistan’s Mohammad Rizwan and Sam Curran of England.

Northampton-born Curran is the son of former Zimbabwe cricket team player and coach and was schooled in Harare but now represents England, the country of his birth.

The 36-year-old Zimbabwean star had an absolutely stunning run in T20Is in 2022, the best-ever season by a Zimbabwean in T20 cricket.

His exceptional performances have recently earned him lucrative contracts to feature in T20 franchise tournaments around the world, including the IPL 2023.

He batted exceptionally well throughout the year and was named in the ICC Mean’s T20 World Cup Team of the Year after a memorable campaign with the Chevrons.

Sam Curran was named the Player of the Tournament while he also picked up the Player of the Match award in the final at the ICC Men’s T20 World CupSik

With 735 runs in the year at a strike rate of over 150, Raza scored more than 250 runs over the next-best Zimbabwe batter in T20Is. He also led the wickets chart for them, taking 25 wickets at an excellent economy rate of 6.13.

While Raza’s year with the bat was truly remarkable, his standout performance came in a game where he made little contribution with the bat. He played a massive role in Zimbabwe’s win over Pakistan in the T20 World Cup, taking three for 25 with the ball before inflicting the run out off the final ball to give Zimbabwe the one-run victory.

Raza will battle it out for the coveted award with Indian right-handed batter Yadav, who scored 781 runs, which included a century against Afghanistan in the 2022 Asia Cup.

Surya’s tally of 68 sixes in the calendar year in T20Is is the highest anyone has recorded in the format in a year by a fair distance. With two hundreds and nine half-centuries in the year, Yadav was the standout men’s T20I batter.

Also vying for the award is T20 World Cup winner and player of the tournament Curran, who was brilliant throughout the T20 World Cup and dominated the wicket-taking statistics.

Barring these three, Pakistan’s Mohammad Rizwan has also been nominated in the four-man list after scoring 960 runs from 25 matches. Rizwan won the award in 2021.

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