Sri Lankan cricketer Kumar Sangakkara, on Monday, was announced as the CEAT International Cricketer of the Year in a glittering ceremony in Mumbai.
Tyre major CEAT, who've honored the best of the international cricketers based on their performances as rated by the CEAT Cricket Ratings (CCR) since 1995, gave the award to the former Sri Lankan captain.
Sangakkara enjoyed a stellar 2014-15 having notched up staggering numbers in all three formats of the game and in the process guided the island nation to victory in the World T20 and Test series wins away to England and at home against Pakistan. He capped off a truly memorable season by becoming the first cricketer to score four consecutive World Cup centuries. This is the first time Sangakkara is winning the title. The other Sri Lankans to win the award - Sanath Jayasuriya (1997-98), Muttiah Muralitharan (2000-01, 2001-02, 2006-07) and Mahela Jayawardene (2007-08).
Fellow Sri Lankan Rangana Herath was conferred the award for the the best international bowler of the year for his bowling exploits in Sri Lanka's success in the Test format while South African Test captain Hashim Amla picked up the batting award. Ajinkya Rahane, who scored a century in India's famous Test win at Lord's last year, besides contributing heavily in each of India's four overseas tours of South Africa, New Zealand, England and Australia was adjudicated the the Indian Cricketer of The Year.
Rewarding India's budding talent, Deepak Hooda, best known for his exploits in the first half of Indian Premier League 2015 with Rajasthan Royals, was given the young player of the year award. Vinay Kumar, whose 48 wickets guided Karnataka to a second successive Ranji Trophy title picked up the domestic cricketer of the year. The West Indian duo of Dwayne Bravo and Kieron Pollard recieved the T20 Player of the year and Popular Choice Awards respectively. In addition, Rohit Sharma was given a CEAT Special Award for his record-breaking double ton of 264 against Sri Lanka.
Sunil Gavaskar, one of the three founding members of the CEAT Cricket Rating awards along with Ian Chappel and Clive Lloyd, was in attendance and also witnessed his World Cup winning teammate Kapil Dev receive the lifetime achievement award for his contribution to the game. Hailed among the foremost of all-rounders during his time, Kapil became the first cricketer to score 5000 runs and take over 400 wickets in Test cricket besides captaining India to a historic World Cup success in 1983.
Speaking at the ceremony, Gavaskar said, "It is once again an absolute a talent to see such a large gathering for the CEAT Cricket Awards. These awards have been the hallmark of excellence in recognizing excellence from all over the world. Objectivity is key to these ratings and they are for runs scored, wickets taken and catches held by a player.
"It is for the contribution the player has made towards the team's and his own success. I would also like to congratulate Mumbai Indians for their win (in IPL 2015). You have made every Mumbaikar proud."
CCR is the first cricket rating to officialy recognize and reward cricketers for their performances in the international cricket arena. 2015 saw the 20th editions of the awards.
Full list of winners:
CEAT International Cricketer of the Year - Kumar Sangakkara
CEAT International Batsman of the Year - Hashim Amla
CEAT International Bowler of the Year - Rangana Herath
CEAT T20 Player of the Year - Dwayne Bravo
CEAT Indian Cricketer of the Year - Ajinkya Rahane
CEAT Special Award - Rohit Sharma
CEAT Domestic Cricketer of the Year - Vinay Kumar
CEAT Young Player of the Year - Deepak Hooda
CEAT International Lifetime Achievement Award - Kapil Dev