India's stylish opener Shikhar Dhawan received the Wisden Cricketer of the Year award on Wednesday, along with England's Joe Root, Australian duo Ryan Harris and Chris Rogers, and England women's captain Charlotte Edwards.
The tradition of encouraging performances started in 1889 and the honoured five were chosen by the editor of the Wisden Cricketers' Almanack, depending on their "excellence in, or performance on, the previous English summer".
Dhawan scored an impressive 187 off 174 balls against Australia on his Test debut in Mohali. He also came up with a man-of-the-series performance in the Champions Trophy, which include two well-made centuries against South Africa and West Indies. Harris' heroics in the Ashes and Rogers' comeback to the highest level of cricket in style worked for them, while Root's maiden Test century against New Zealand and maiden Ashes century at the Lord's were enough to make it to the list.
Meanwhile, Edwards is only the second ever woman cricketer to receive the honour, after England's Claire Taylor in 2009. "In winning the Ashes home and away, Edwards crowned an outstanding career as an England cricketer," Wisden said in a media release. "In November 2013 she became the ﬁrst person to captain England in 100 one-day internationals - the most by a man is (Andrew) Strauss's 62 - and she has scored more 50-over and Twenty20 international runs than any woman."
The Almanack has been released with the cover of Sachin Tendulkar, bidding farewell to fans as he walks out of the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. "Sport's pleasure resides in meaning so much to so many, while being essentially meaningless itself," Lawrence Booth, editing the Almanack for the third time, writes in his notes. "Think about this for too long and you'll get a headache. But Tendulkar came closer than anyone to making sense of it."
(Edited by Vishnuprasad S Pillai)