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Hope scores big on awards night

MIKE KING, [email protected]

Hope scores big on awards night

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Shai Hope had three reasons to smile more broadly than everyone else at the Cricket West Indies(CWI)/West Indies Player Association (WIPA) awards ceremony at Hilton Barbados on Wednesday night.

That’s because the elegant 24-year-old batsman captured the Cricketer Of The Year, Test Cricketer Of The Year and One-Day International Cricketer Of The Year awards for 2017.

In ten Tests last year, Hope scored 773 runs at an average of 45.47, dominated by defining match-winning hundreds – 147 and an unbeaten 118 – against England at Leeds. In the
One-Day arena, he played
22 matches and hit four half-centuries, averaging 33.33.

The other nominees for Cricketer Of The Year were Jason Holder, Ashley Nurse and Jason Mohammed, while the other nominees for Test Cricketer Of The Year were Shannon Gabriel, Kemar Roach and Roston Chase.

Evin Lewis, the bright spot in the One-Day series in England, with a breathtaking 176 at The Oval, was stunningly not among the nominees for the 50-overs award. The others nominated were Holder, Mohammed and Nurse.

Lewis, the pugnacious 26-year-old left-handed opener, had to be consoled with the West Indies Twenty20 Cricketer Of The Year. He could not attend the ceremony and in his absence, fellow Trinidadian Shannon Gabriel collected his award. The other contenders were Carlos Brathwaite, Keswick Williams and Marlon Samuels.

Stafanie Taylor won two of the three major women’s prizes. The 27-year-old all-rounder from Spanish Town, Jamaica, was voted the Women’s Cricketer Of The Year and the Women’s One-Day International Cricketer of the Year. Last year, she scored three One-Day International half-centuries and snatched 13 scalps at 21.38.

Her closest rival was Deandra Dottin, who smashed 104 off 76 balls against Pakistan in the World Cup in England, but that was her only score of note. In seven World Cup matches, the Barbadian all-rounder, who turned 27 yesterday, collected just one wicket while Taylor captured five in six games.

Chase was named the Regional Limited-Overs Cricketer Of The Year, while the diminutive Grenadian opening batsman Devon Smith was voted as the Regional Four-Day Cricketer Of The Year.

Promising 20-year-old fast bowler Keemo Paul of Guyana was selected as the West Indies Emerging Player Of The Year, while hard-hitting Jamaican wicketkeeper/batsman Chadwick Walton was named as the Caribbean T20 Cricketer Of The Year.

Guyana were named the First-Class Team Of The Year. West Indies leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo collected the award on behalf of the team, with Barbados Cricket Association president Conde Riley making the presentation.

Kirstan Kallicharran, the vice-captain of the West Indies youth team, was voted as West Indies Under-19 Cricketer Of The Year while fellow Trinidadian Joel Wilson is the Umpire Of The Year.

President of the West Indies Women’s Cricket Federation, Carol Whilby-Maxwell, of St Ann, Jamaica, was given the CWI Lifetime Achievement Award on the eve of her 63rd birthday. The mother of two and grandmother of three, who resides in St Lucia, said she was “honoured, humbled and blessed” to receive the award for her long and sterling contribution to women’s cricket.

The former Windwards Islands and West Indies “A” team batsman Dawnley Joseph, of St Vincent and the Grenadines, was given WIPA’s Lifetime Achievement Award. The 51-year-old Joseph received his award from WIPA president Wavell Hinds. (MK)