Published in ESPN, Aug 7th, 2018
Mohammad Abbas, Hasan Ali and Babar Azam were among the big winners at the Pakistan Cricket Board’s annual awards night in Karachi on Wednesday. Abbas was named the Test Cricketer of the Year, while Hasan and Babar walked away with the corresponding honour in ODIs and T20Is.
Abbas had a phenomenal introduction to Test cricket in April 2017, and in the five Tests that Pakistan played over the last 12 months, the 28-year old swing bowler has picked up 27 wickets in five Tests at an average of 16.85.
Hasan built upon his excellent start to international cricket over the past year, taking 26 wickets in 12 matches at an average of just 18, and an outstanding economy rate of 4.76. His best performance of 5 for 34 came in an ODI against Sri Lanka in Abu Dhabi, as part of a series whitewash inflicted upon the visitors. In addition, there were five other instances of the pacer snaffling three-wicket hauls in the last 12 months.
Babar, 23, walked away with the highest T20I honour, for racking up 489 runs in just 12 innings, at an average of 54.33. He scored four half-centuries during this period, including an unbeaten 97 against West Indies; Pakistan’s second highest individual T20I score.
Opener Fakhar Zaman, who recently become the fastest player to 1000 ODI runs and the first Pakistani to score a double-hundred in the format, was presented a “special award for Outstanding Performance”. Captain Sarfraz Ahmed, who did not miss a single match in the last one year, walked away with the Imtiaz Ahmed Spirit of Cricket Award.