Mithali, Jhulan named in ODI Team of the Year

Dubai: India veterans Mithali Raj and Jhulan Goswami have been named in the ICC Women’s ODI Team of the Year, the world cricket governing body announced on Thursday.

The team, which is led by Heather Knight, also features players from South Africa, Australia, England, West Indies and Pakistan.

Mithali amassed 503 runs at an average of 62.87. Her runs came when India struggled as a unit, thus making her contribution even more important. The experienced batter didn’t score any century in 2021 but made a total of six crucial half-centuries.

India speedster Goswami is still proving herself to be a force to reckon with. The 39-year-old claimed a total of 15 wickets in 2021 and maintained an excellent economy rate of 3.77.

England opener Tammy Beaumont amassed the same number of runs as Mithali and at exactly the same average. Beaumont thus finished as the second-highest run-scorer in the format in 2021. She registered one century and four fifties, playing a crucial role in England’s success as a team.

With 632 runs, Lizelle Lee finished as the highest run-scorer in 2021. The South Africa wicketkeeper-batter played only 11 matches but recorded an outstanding batting average of 90.28, with one century and five half-centuries.

Lee got her side off to rapid starts, which summed up her strike-rate of 79.00 – the third-highest among batters with a minimum of 300 runs in the calendar year.

Alyssa Healy had a great year once again as she accumulated 267 runs in just six ODIs at an average of 44.50 in 2021. The Australian scored two fifties, including a best of 77 which came against India in September.

The 2017 World Cup-winning England skipper Heather Knight has been a vital cog of her team’s middle-order for a number of years now. She was one of the top performers in that role once again in 2021. Knight accumulated a total of 423 runs at an average of 42.30, including one century and three fifties. She also played a key role with the ball, chipping in with five wickets at an average of 19.80.

West Indies all-rounder Hayley Matthews scored a total of 380 runs in 2021, including one century and a fifty. She made an equal impact with her bowling as well, picking up 18 wickets at an outstanding average of 22.44.

South Africa all-rounder Marizanne Kapp played the role of an attacking middle-order batter, scoring at a strike-rate of 98.91. She amassed a total of 183 runs at an average of 61, including a best of 68 not out which came against Pakistan. She played an equally important role with ball, picking up 11 wickets at an average of 29.18.

With 18 wickets, Shabnim Ismail finished as the joint second-highest wicket-taker in 2021. A reliable pacer both with the new ball and towards the end, Ismail was a consistent performer for South Africa in 12 matches that she played – going at an economy of only 4.11 runs per over.

Pakistan all-rounder Fatima Sana finished the year as the joint-highest wicket-taker, with 20 wickets in just 13 matches. Even though her economy of 5.61 was a bit on the higher side, Sana took wickets at a strike-rate of 26.6. She did well as a lower-order batter too, amassing a total of 132 runs at an average of 14.66.

West Indies off-spinner Anisa Mohammed bamboozled almost every batter that faced her in 2021. Mohammed finished as the joint-highest wicket-taker with 20 wickets at an average of 18.00. She was one of the most economical bowlers in 2021, conceding only 3.61 runs per over.

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