Dhoni, Gambhir in running for ICC Cricketer of the Year award


Gambhir, Dhoni, Australian pacer Mitchell Johnson and Englishman Andrew Strauss have been short-listed for the Sir Garfield Sobers trophy for Cricketer of the Year after voting by an independent 25-member academy.

In addition, Gambhir, Johnson and Strauss were also short-listed for the Test Player of the Year alongside Sri Lanka's Thilan Samaraweera.

Dhoni is also in contention to retain the ODI Player of the Year award he won last year as he is short-listed in that category with team-mates Yuvraj and Sehwag as well as West Indies' Shivnarine Chanderpaul.

Pacer Zaheer Khan, off-spinner Harbhajan Singh, VVS Laxman, Amit Mishra and women team's former captain Mithali Raj, who made the long list of various categories earlier were left out of the final list of nominees.

Johnson is the lone Aussie to make the nominees' list of the top three awards.
The Twenty20 International Performance of the year short-list does not feature any Indians. Pakistan all-rounder Shahid Afridi and pacer Umar Gul, who are joined by West Indies' Chris Gayle and Sri Lanka's Tillakaratne Dilshan make up that list.

This year's awards include eight individual prizes and also features the selection of the Test and ODI Teams of the Year and the award to the side that has adhered most to the Spirit of Cricket.

The nominations were made by a five-man ICC selection panel chaired by former West Indies captain and current chairman of the ICC Cricket Committee Clive Lloyd. The panel also included former players such as Indian leg-spinner Anil Kumble, Mudassar Nazar of Pakistan, Bob Taylor of England and New Zealand's Stephen Fleming.

The nominees for the Women's Cricketer of the Year are last year's winner England captain Charlotte Edwards along with team-mate Claire Taylor and Australia's Shelley Nitschke.

The Spirit of Cricket award was voted on by all international captains as well as all members of the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Umpires and Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Match Referees.

The Umpire of the Year award was voted on by the captains and the match referees based on the umpires' performance statistics.

The Emerging Player of the Year nominees short-list features two Australians, Ben Hilfenhaus and Peter Siddle, as well as Jesse Ryder of New Zealand and England's Graham Onions.

To qualify for that award a player must be under the age of 26 and have played fewer than five Tests and/or 10 ODIs at the start of the voting period.

Based on the period between August 13, 2008 and August 24 2009, the ICC Awards 2009 take into account performances by players and officials in that period for the game.
That period includes such high-profile events as the ICC World Twenty20 in England, the ICC Women's World Cup in Australia and the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier in South Africa, as well as several bilateral Test and ODI series.

The LG ICC Awards ceremony is now in its sixth year and this year it will be held in Johannesburg to coincide with the ICC Champions Trophy. Previous ceremonies were held in London (2004), Sydney (2005), Mumbai (2006), Johannesburg (2007) and Dubai (2008).

Short-lists of nominees (in alphabetical order)

Cricketer of the Year: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Ind), Gautam Gambhir (Ind), Mitchell Johnson (Aus), Andrew Strauss (Eng).
Test Player of the Year: Gautam Gambhir (Ind), Mitchell Johnson (Aus), Thilan Samaraweera (SL), Andrew Strauss (Eng).
ODI Player of the Year: Shivnarine Chanderpaul (WI), Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Ind), Virender Sehwag (Ind), Yuvraj Singh (Ind).
Emerging Player: Ben Hilfenhaus (Aus), Graham Onions (Eng), Jesse Ryder (NZ), Peter Siddle (Aus).
Associate and Affiliate Player of the Year: Rizwan Cheema (Can), Ryan ten Doeschate (Ned), William Porterfield (Ire), Edgar Schiferli (Ned).
Twenty20 International Performance of the Year: Shahid Afridi (Pak), Tillakaratne Dilshan (SL), Chris Gayle (WI), Umar Gul (Pak).
Women's Cricketer of the Year: Charlotte Edwards (Eng), Shelley Nitschke (Aus), Claire Taylor (Eng).
Umpire of the Year: Aleem Dar, Tony Hill, Asad Rauf, Simon Taufel.
Spirit of Cricket: Australia, England, New Zealand, Sri Lanka.

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