Thursday, September 07, 2006

Dhoni Who??

Where's Dhoni?

Here are the list of nominees for the categories ODI player and Emerging player of the year for the ICC 2006 Cricket Awards:

ODI Player
Yuvraj Singh (Ind), Michael Hussey (Aus), Ricky Ponting (Aus), Shane Bond (NZ), Irfan Pathan (Ind), Andrew Flintoff (Eng), Mahela Jayawardene (SL), Muttiah Muralidaran (SL), Rahul Dravid (Ind), Kevin Pietersen (Eng), Mohammed Yousuf (Pak), Herschelle Gibbs (SA), Brett Lee (Aus), Shahid Afridi (Pak), Inzamam-ul-Haq (Pak), Adam Gilchrist (Aus), Kumar Sangakkara (SL).
Emerging Player
Monty Panesar (Eng), Alastair Cook (Eng), Denesh Ramdin (WI), Malinga Bandara (SL), Mohammed Asif (Pak), Upul Tharanga (SL), Ian Bell (Eng), Shahriar Nafees (BD).

A quick lookie will reveal that a certain flowing-maned-bat-weilder is missing. Where is Mahendra Singh Dhoni?? Granted he has some way to go in the Test arena but he's certainly made headway in the ODI format, so much so that he found himself top of the world, according the ICC cricket ratings atleast. He now languishes in fourth place, below Gilchrist, Ponting and Sarwan, all of whom have been around for a few years now. Let's for a moment assume that Dhoni does not deserve a nomination in the ODI category, even though he most definitely deserves a nomination over Afridi (he has a batting average of around 12 for the last year), Pathan and big Freddie Flintoff who has done little to turn around England's dismal One day run.

We only realise how glaring Dhoni's omission actually is when we check out the Emerging player category. None of the names on that list have been anything close to the best in the world, other than possibly Asif, who is consistent, quick and deadly accurate, picking up a truckload of wickets at a miniscule average. In fact, other than Dhoni, none of them even feature in the any Top 10, ODI or Test, batting or bowling and haven't in the last year.

So why was Dhoni left out? Why is Allan Donald, a part of the shortlising committee for the awards so shocked at his omission? Unless the ICC has any answers, this is just going to be yet another cricket controversy swept to fine leg and beyond.


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