Indian batting icon Sachin Tendulkar today bagged his maiden ICC Cricketer of the Year trophy along with the People’s Choice Award, while compatriot Virender Sehwag was named the Test Cricketer of the Year at a glittering ceremony here.
Tendulkar, who has an international career spanning over two decades, clinched the coveted trophy by beating South African Hashim Amla, Englishman Graeme Swann and Sehwag.
"It’s better late than never. I am getting the award in the 21st year of my career, so it’s fantastic. I have been working hard for this award," Tendulkar said after receiving the honour.
Tendulkar, who made his debut as a 16-year-old against Pakistan way back in November 15, 1989, was also named the winner of LG People’s Choice Award.
"To play well is a challenge that you take in your stride and work hard to perform. I am doing this for the last 21 years and I take a lot of pride to play for my country," Tendulkar said.
India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni was named captain of the ICC’s World Test XI, while Australia was chosen as the best ODI team of the period between August 2009 and 2010.
South African AB de Villiers clinched the ICC ODI Player of the Year award.
England fast bowler Steven Finn, who played in six Test matches in the voting period and took 27 wickets at an average of 21.85, won the ICC Emerging Player of the Year Award.
New Zealand swashbuckler Brendon McCullum’s blistering 56-ball unbeaten 116 against Australia in Christchurch was adjudged the ICC Twenty20 International Performance of the Year.
Spirit of the Game Award went to New Zealand and Aleem Dar of Pakistan won the ICC Umpire of the Year trophy.
West Indian great Joel Garner was inducted into the ICC’s Hall of Fame in the ceremony, while the Netherlands’ all-rounder Ryan ten Doeschate became the ICC Associate and Affiliate Player of the Year.
The voting period includes such high-profile events as the ICC Men’s and Women’s World Twenty20 2010 in West Indies, the ICC Champions Trophy 2009 in South Africa and the ICC World Cricket League Division 1 2010 in the Netherlands, as well as several bilateral Test and ODI series.
The player awards are judged by a 25-person voting academy, which is entirely independent of the ICC. The process is monitored by independent auditors Ernst and Young.