Home » Wisden names Cummins the best cricketer in the world, more than a decade after an Australian last earned the title

Wisden names Cummins the best cricketer in the world, more than a decade after an Australian last earned the title

Pat Cummins has become the first Australian since 2012 to be named Wisden’s leading cricketer in the world.

Other Aussies honoured by the publication were Travis Head, for the year’s best performance in Test matches, and Usman Khawaja, Mitchell Starc and Ashleigh Gardner, who were among the almanac’s five cricketers of the year.

Cummins led his country to success in both the World Test Championship and 50-over World Cup. He succeeded Ben Stokes, who has landed the prestigious title three times in the last four years. The last Australian to garner the accolade was Michael Clarke.

Head won the Wisden Trophy for Test performance of the year for what editor Lawrence Booth described “his pulsating 163 off just 174 balls [which] helped Australia take control of the World Test Championship final against India at The Oval”.

There was also a distinct Ashes flavour to the historic cricketers of the year panel, the coveted once-in-a-career award dating back to 1889 and focused on performances during the preceding English summer.

Gardner was the sole player from the Women’s Ashes chosen. 

Australia’s Ashleigh Gardner was also honoured by Wisden as one of the best cricketers in the world.(Getty Images: ICC/Matthew Lewis)

“Having been player of the tournament as Australia won the T20 World Cup in South Africa, Ashleigh Gardner enjoyed a central role in their retention of the Ashes, helping them to victory in the Test match at Trent Bridge with 12 wickets for her off-breaks – the second-best analysis in women’s Test history,” Booth wrote.

The editor added, “Usman Khawaja was a thorn in the side of England’s bowlers throughout the Ashes, facing 1,263 balls and scoring 496 runs, in each case the highest tally of the series. Without his double of 141 and 65 at Edgbaston, where he batted on all five days, Australia might not have retained the urn”.