Clarke, Watson claim Australian honours

Captain Michael Clarke claimed his third Allan Border Medal as Australia’s cricketer of the year after also winning Test player honours and just missing out on the one-day international award Monday.

Clarke’s award as the country’s top cricketer places him second on the all-time list, trailing only former captain Ricky Ponting, who has claimed the honour four times in its 13-year history.

The 30-year-old Clarke earned 231 votes from players, media and umpires, with Mike Hussey second on 174 and Shane Watson third with 166.

All-rounder Watson won both the ODI and T20 player of the year awards.

Watson and Clarke had 19 points each in the limited-overs category, but Watson won because he had more first-place votes.

Clarke claimed the Test player award in a countback from Ponting. Clarke and his predecessor as captain both polled nine votes each but the current skipper was awarded the title because he had more first-place votes.

Both averaged more than 100 in the four-Test series sweep against India in Australia in December-January, sharing partnerships of 288 in Sydney and 386 in Adelaide.

Clarke’s Test season included five centuries, highlighted by his unbeaten and career-best 329 in the Sydney Test in January against India.

“No doubt it is very special,” Clarke said on Monday.

Test opener David Warner won the Bradman young cricketer of the year award. The former Twenty20 specialist scored a century in his second Test against New Zealand in Hobart in December and another 100 off 69 balls against India in Perth in January.

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