Tuesday, 24 January 2017

David Warner wins second Allan Border Medal

David Warner has stormed to his second successive Allan Border Medal, to heat up the debate over who will go down as the player of this generation
The greatest testament to Warner’s Medal double, which has only happened on three previous occasions, is the fact he has once again shaded Steve Smith, who has been widely tipped to go down as Australia’s best since Bradman.

Warner climbed to the summit of Australian cricket on the back of the most lethal one-day international season ever produced by a home grown batsman, with a total of seven centuries.

David Warner with Allan Border after winning back-to-back gongs. Picture: Brett Costello
David Warner with Allan Border after winning back-to-back gongs.

STRAIGHT FROM THE AB MEDAL BLUE CARPET

Test match voting is weighted higher than the white ball formats, but even though Mitchell Starc and Smith both enjoyed better seasons in the baggy green, they were still unable to stop the runaway train in coloured clothing.

Warner joined Ricky Ponting (2006-07), Shane Watson (2010-11 and Michael Clarke (2012-13) as back-to-back AB medallists, and in the process also pocked the ODI gong.

David Warner with his wife Candice. Picture: Brett Costello
David Warner with his wife Candice.

For the second straight year it came down to the wire between the vice-captain and his skipper, with Warner polling 269 votes compared to Smith’s 248.

Starc was named Test player of the year, an extraordinary effort in itself given he missed half of 2016 with a serious ankle injury — and he finished third overall for the AB.

Meg Lanning won her third Belinda Clark award for the country’s best-performed female athlete, also taking out the inaugural domestic women’s player of the year.

Warner also bagged the ODI gong. (Photo by Matt King/Getty Images)
Warner also bagged the ODI gong.

Matthew Hayden was one of three former greats inducted into the Australian Cricketer’s Hall of Fame on Monday night — duly recognised for his reputation as arguably the country’s most brilliant ever opener.

However, Hayden paid the ultimate tribute to Warner — who now has 18 Test centuries compared to the big Queenslander’s 30.

“I think he’s a better player than me, there’s no question of that,” said Hayden.
“His only challenge is like all great players, is he’s almost too good. He’s got too many options.

“This summer has tested him. He really had to work hard on getting back into the rhythm of Test match cricket with some early season lack of form but good players they make the adjustment and he’s one of them and Steve is the same, they just keep making the adjustment.”



Warner is now one of only six players to have won the Allan Border Medal, the Test and one-day prizes, joining Glenn McGrath, Hayden, Ponting, Watson and Smith.

In total Warner scored nine hundreds and eight fifties across all three formats for a grand total of 2420 runs.
Warner may have clinched his triumph in the final weeks of the summer, on the back of his maiden Test century at the MCG and then his stunning ‘before lunch’ effort at home in Sydney.

For the one-day award he earned 53 votes, to beat all-rounder Mitchell Marsh (40), who also made the ICC ODI team of the year.

Sydney Test debutant Hilton Cartwright was recognised as the young player of the year, with the women’s version of that award going to Victorian gun Sophie Molineux.

Another Victorian, veteran Cameron White was named men’s domestic player of the year and even though he retired nine months ago, Shane Watson took out the Twenty20 player of the year.

Hayden and Boon were inducted into the Australian Cricket Hall of Fame. Picture: Gregg Porteous
Hayden and Boon were inducted into the Australian Cricket Hall of Fame.

THE AWARD WINNERS

Allan Border Medallist: David Warner
Belinda Clark Medallist: Meg Lanning
Test Player of the Year: Mitchell Starc
ODI Player of the Year: David Warner
Domestic Men’s Player of the Year: Cameron White
Bradman Young Cricketer of the Year: Hilton Cartwright
Domestic Women’s Player of the Year: Meg Lanning
Betty Wilson Young Cricketer of the Year: Sophie Molineux
Australian Cricket Hall of Fame inductees: Betty Wilson, David Boon, Matthew Hayden