There are umpteenth cricketers with a bat and a ball in hand. There are thousands in the field. And there are hundreds who play well. But there are few who reach the top and make their mark. It is the game and the way these players react to the pressure makes them big. The rewards are fans, the love and the warmth that comes with them.
Apart from these romances, players also have prestigious awards to look forward to. ICC and cricket boards including BCCI and Cricket Australia have awards for players. Wisden Cricket Almanack is one of the greatest of the fields to happen in the cricketing world. It is simply called Wisden by cricket lovers. Fans or spectators and the pundits often term this as the bible of cricket.
It is a cricket reference book that is published annually in England. Australian and Indian editions have also been commissioned in 2008 and 2012. Interestingly, Wisden has been releasing a list of top five cricketers from 1902. Amidst a lockdown when fans are craving for the game and the action, Wisden has released their list of top cricketers. For the year 2019, Wisden has released a list of five players and has declared two names of players into Almanack.
The leading cricketer for the year was Ben Stokes. There was little doubt about his entry. However, for the joy of female fans and supporters of female cricket, Ellyse Perry has been a pleasant entry into the lot. She, alongside Ben, has been added to Wisden Almanack for the year 2019.
Interestingly, Ellyse Perry not only got her name into the prestigious account she also created a record which is one of a kind. She is the first woman to collect the award twice. In 2018, the award came to India and was handed to the stylish opener Smriti Mandhana. For her incredible performance in 2016, Perry got her name into the list for the first time. Perry has been one of the best Australian all-rounders. She has been, naturally, one of the pillars of women in yellow.
Her passion for the game was witnessed recently when she was injured for the finals and yet was along the boundary lines to see her team cruise through and lift the cup again. Cricket needs inspirations like her who can help develop cricket as an alternative for women too. Her dedication and hard work have given results and we can only hope that this is only one-of-many awards and recognitions to come at her doorsteps.