Pakistan's star wicket-keeper batter Mohammad Rizwan bagged the title of Men's T20 Cricketer of the Year as the International Cricket Council (ICC) Sunday announced the winners of the ICC Awards in different categories.
Shedding light on the outstanding performance of Mohammad Rizwan during the calendar year 2021, the ICC, in a statement said, “Aggregating a staggering 1326 runs in only 29 matches, Rizwan struck at an average of 73.66 and a strike-rate of 134.89.”
Apart from his exploits with the bat, he was as solid as ever behind the stumps, playing a key role in Pakistan's run to the semis during the ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2021, where he ended up as the third-highest run-scorer, read the statement.
Rizwan also scored the maiden T20I century of his career against South Africa in Lahore early in the year and ended it continuing his form with a brilliant knock of 87 against West Indies in Karachi. With another T20 World Cup coming up next year, Pakistan will hope that Rizwan continues in the same vein.
While sharing his views on the achievement, Rizwan said he is more happy because Pakistan has won the award.
"It is a pleasure to see Pakistan's name among the top teams of the world," Rizwan said in a conversation with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB).
Rizwan gave credit for his award to the team management, his fellow cricketers and analysts, saying that "team Pakistan has a standing in [the top squads of] the world due to everyone's hard work".
Though a chase of 152 looked easy on paper, Pakistan had the weight of history against them in the T20 World Cup encounter against India. With the likes of Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammad Shami in opposition attack, the task was made all the more complicated. But as was almost always the case in 2021, Rizwan along with his skipper Babar Azam ensured that a famous victory would be sealed that would be celebrated in the history of Pakistan cricket for years to come.
Rizwan smacked 79* in only 55 deliveries, hitting six fours and three sixes. The ease with which he countered the Indian bowling attack was a thing of sheer beauty. He ensured that there were no hiccups in the run-chase as Pakistan galloped towards the target without losing a single wicket to seal a 10-wicket victory.
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