Sri Lanka’s extravagant batsman Tillakaratne Dilshan has won the ICC Twenty20 International Performance of the Year in recognition of his 96 not out off 57 balls at the ICC World Twenty20 2009 in England. This is the second year the award has been given to recognise the most impressive performance by a player in Twenty20 Internationals during the 12-month voting period and it continues to mark the advent of this exciting format of the game at international level.
On 19 June 2009, during the semi-final of the ICC World Twenty20 against West Indies at the Oval, Dilshan smashed 96 not out in 57 balls, in a performance that included two sixes and 12 fours. He helped to steer his side into the finals of the tournament after they beat the opposition by 57 runs.
The award rounds off a good year of Twenty20 cricket for Dilshan who took the ICC World Twenty20 by storm after showcasing his astonishing flick-shot over his head and also picked up the Player of the Tournament at the ICC World Twenty20 2009 after amassing 317 runs at an average of 52.83
According to the LG ICC Awards 25-person voting academy Dilshan’s effort was the most impressive performance of the voting period from 13 August 2008 to 24 August 2009. It beat competition from West Indies’ Chris Gayle for his 88 off 50 balls against Australia in the ICC World Twenty20 2009 in England at the Oval; Pakistan’s Umar Gul for his 5-6 against New Zealand in the same tournament at the same venue and Gul’s team-mate Shahid Afridi for his 51 of 34 balls and 2-16 against South Africa in the semi-final of the tournament at Trent Bridge.
After collecting his award from last year’s winner Yuvraj Singh from India, Dilshan said: “This is a great feeling for me. I can’t forget about that innings – it was so important and I was really happy about my overall performance in that tournament. It was a thrill for me to do well in Englandand do well for my team. “I’m really proud of myself for having a new shot named after me (the Dilscoop or the Dilshan). That shot has given me confidence. If I am under pressure I can play that shot and put the pressure back on the bowlers.”
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The Twenty20 International Performance of the Year was one of 11 individual and team honours handed out during the LG ICC Awards in association with FICA.
The event, held at The Sandton Sun Convention Centre, Johannesburg recognises cricket’s star performers over a 12-month period. That period includes such high-profile events as the ICC World Twenty20 2009 in England, the ICC Women’s World Cup 2009 in Australiaand the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier 2009 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 is being held in Johannesburgto coincide with the ICC Champions Trophy 2009. Previous ceremonies were held in London (2004),Sydney(2005), Mumbai (2006), Johannesburg (2007) and Dubai (2008).
LG ICC Awards 2009 – Winners
- Mitchell Johnson, Australia :Cricketer of the Year
- Nominations for this award: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Ind), Gautam Gambhir (Ind), Mitchell Johnson (Aus), Andrew Strauss (Eng)
- Gautam Gambhir, India :Test Player of the Year
- Nominations for this award: Gautam Gambhir (Ind), Mitchell Johnson (Aus), Thilan Samaraweera (SL), Andrew Strauss (Eng)
- Mahendra Singh Dhoni, India :ODI Player of the Year
- Nominations for this award: Shivnarine Chanderpaul (WI), Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Ind), Virender Sehwag (Ind), Yuvraj Singh (Ind)
- Peter Siddle, Australia :Emerging Player of the Year
- Nominations for this award: Ben Hilfenhaus (Aus), Graham Onions (Eng), Jesse Ryder (NZ), Peter Siddle (Aus)
- William Porterfield, Ireland :Associate and Affiliate Player of the Year
- Nominations for this award: Rizwan Cheema (Can), Ryan ten Doeschate (Ned), William Porterfield (Ire), Edgar Schiferli (Ned)
- Tillakaratne Dilshan, Sri Lanka :Twenty20 International Performance of the Year
- For scoring 96 not out off 57 balls against the West Indies in the semi-final of the ICC WT20 at The Oval on 19 June, 2009
- Claire Taylor, England :Women’s Cricketer of the Year
- Nominations for this award: Charlotte Edwards (Eng), Shelley Nitschke (Aus), Claire Taylor (Eng)
- Aleem Dar, Pakistan :Umpire of the Year
- Nominations for this award: Aleem Dar, Tony Hill, Asad Rauf, Simon Taufel
- New Zealand :Spirit of Cricket
- Nominations for this award: Australia, England, New Zealand, Sri Lanka