Dubai: Star batter Virat Kohli was Monday named the ICC Men’s Player of the Month for October following a series of stellar performances during India’s charge to the T20 World Cup semifinals in Australia.
Pakistan’s veteran all-rounder Nida Dar won the honour in the women’s category thanks to her sensational form in their Asia Cup campaign. Dar edged out the Indian duo of Jemimah Rodrigues and Deepti Sharma, who produced impressive displays in the same tournament which their side won.
Both Kohli and Dar were declared winners following a global vote conducted among media representatives, ICC Hall of Famers, former international players and registered fans.
Kohli won his first Player of the Month award after scoring 205 runs with the bat, showcasing the full array of his batting talent throughout October.
Apart from scoring a brilliant half-century against Netherlands in Sydney, he produced an unforgettable innings in the stunning victory over Pakistan in front of a capacity crowd at the MCG to kick off their campaign in style.
At 31 for four, Kohli asserted his dominance on the opposition bowlers in a memorable display of controlled aggression, helping his side to chase down the 160 target on the final ball, thanks to his unbeaten 82 from 53 balls.
The India talisman secured the award after being nominated for the first time, edging out a competitive field which included South African finisher David Miller and the in-form Sikandar Raza of Zimbabwe, who both enjoyed key contributions at the T20 World Cup in Australia.
“It is a great honour for me to have been voted the ICC Men’s Player of the Month for October. Being chosen as the standout player by fans across the globe as well as the panel makes this accolade even more special for me,” Kohli said in an ICC release.
“I want to pay tribute to the other nominees who performed so well during the month and also to my teammates, who continue to support me to perform to the best of my ability.”
Former West Indies international and ICC Player of the Month voting panel member Daren Ganga said: “Kohli is the quintessential batter. He displayed immense character to overcome a lean period with the bat. October saw him score an unbeaten 49 against South Africa followed by two half centuries at the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup.
“That majestic knock against Pakistan will be remembered as one of the all-time best T20I innings. I saw it live at the MCG and to deliver in such style, in that occasion, is only a privilege enjoyed by the greats of this beautiful game.”
For her key contributions to Pakistan’s surge to the semifinals in the Asia Cup in Bangladesh, Dar took home the ICC Women’s Player of the Month award.
Scoring 145 valuable runs at an average of 72.50 during the month and taking eight key wickets, the influential all-rounder underlined her importance to the Pakistan cause despite falling short in the knockout stages.
Dar was sensational in the historic victory over India in Sylhet. Batting first, she arrived at the crease at 33 for three and made 56 not out to take them to a competitive 137.
She then went on to star with the ball, taking the key wickets of Harmanpreet Kaur and Jemimah Rodrigues, as the eventual tournament winners fell short in dramatic fashion.