The Herald (Harare)

Zimbabwe: Taylor Tipped to Retain Double

CAN Brendan Taylor steal the thunder again when Zimbabwe Cricket honour outstanding performers at their annual awards ceremony in Harare this evening? Taylor, who scooped a memorable double last season when he was crowned both the Cricketer of the Year and Batsman of the Year, is on the threshold of making history as the first player to win the big prizes back to back since the inauguration of the awards in 2009.

Taylor appears to be the front-runner in the backdrop of rather miserable performances by the majority of players during the period under review.

The right-handed batsman was nominated for both accolades this year.

But he faces the challenge of Mountaineers top order batsman Hamilton Masakadza in both categories.

According to the organisers, the awards will cover performances during the course of the season running from August 2011 to March 2012.

Zimbabwe only had one international assignment against New Zealand and when most of the players failed to flourish, Taylor had better figures beginning with his stand-out performances at home in October 2012.

The Zimbabwe captain, who later won contracts to play in New Zealand and Sri Lanka domestic competitions, achieved a milestone with his back-to-back One-Day International centuries (128 and 107, both unbeaten) and another 75 runs in the same tour.

In six innings against New Zealand at home and away, Taylor struck two ODI centuries and three half tons at an incredible average of 109.25 to amass 437 runs.

He maintained his good form in the limited overs game away in New Zealand last February where he scored two fifties in both the 50-over game and the two Twenty20 matches although terribly falling short in the Test match in Napier.

His rival Masakadza enjoyed blistering form on the domestic front but sadly was far from being impressive in all three formats against New Zealand, save for the last two Twenty20 matches.

Southern Rocks pace bowler Brian Vitori is also vying for the big award.

The 22-year old broke on the international scene in awesome form last year claiming five Test and 11 ODI wickets against Bangladesh.

Vitori is also running for the Bowler of the Year award alongside Elton Chigumbura and Kyle Jarvis.

Mountaineers captain Tino Mawoyo is also laying stakes for the Batsman of the Year award where he has stiff competition from Taylor and Masakadza.

This year's new finds Kevin Kasuza of Mountaineers and Mid West Rhinos' promising paceman Richard Muzhange have also been nominated in two categories each for the Rookie of the Year and Most Promising Cricketer awards.

Mashonaland Eagles' Tino Mutombodzi is also vying for the Most Promising Cricketer of the Year while Southern Rocks' batsman Richmond Mutumbami looks forward with hope for the Rookie's award.

Ashley Ndiraya, who won the Female Cricketer of the Year award, has been nominated again this year and will battle for honours with Josephine Nkomo and Modester Mupachikwa.

The awards are in their fourth year running since their inauguration in Bulawayo in 2009 and ZC spokesperson Shingai Rhuhwaya said they are looking to host a successful event.

Nominees

Cricketer-of-the-Year: Hamilton Masakadza, Brian Vitori, Brendan Taylor

Batsman-of-the-Year: Brendan Taylor, Tino Mawoyo, Hamilton Masakadza

Bowler-of-the-Year: Brian Vitori, Elton Chigumbura, Kyle Jarvis

Rookie-of-the-Year: Richmond Mutumbami, Kevin Kasuza, Richard Muzhange

Most Promising Cricketer-of-the-Year: Tino Mutombodzi, Kevin Kasuza, Richard Muzhange

Coach-of-the-Year: David Houghton, David Mutendera, Gary Brent

Scorer-of-the-Year: Freeman Chigovera, Luke Chiwara, Robina Muzunguzika

Umpire-of-the-Year: Owen Chirombe, Langton Rusere

Best-Schools-Cricketer: Ryan Burl, Malcolm Lake, Luke Jongwe

Women

Cricketer-of-the-Year: Ashley Ndiraya, Josephine Nkomo, Modester Mupachikwa

Most Promising Cricketer-of-the-Year: Modester Mupachikwa, Nomatter Mutasa, Loreen Tshuma.

Ads by Google

Copyright © 2012 The Herald. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.