New Zealand's Daryl Mitchell wins ICC Spirit of Cricket Award
New Zealand batter Daryl Mitchell won the ICC Spirit of Cricket Award for 2021. The International Cricket Council (ICC) announced the same on Wednesday. Mitchell has been rewarded for refusing a single in a crucial run-chase against England in the T20 World Cup semi-final last year. He is the fourth New Zealand player to have received this award. Here are further details.
Why does it matter?
The Spirit of Cricket award recognizes the gesture of a player that is in the spirit of the game. The spirit of the game involves respect for - 'Your opponents', 'Your own captain and team', 'The role of the umpires', 'The game's traditional values'. Mitchell is the fourth Kiwi player after Daniel Vettori, Brendon McCullum, and Kane Williamson to win this award.
A real honor to receive the award: Mitchell
"It is a real honor to receive the award and it was absolutely amazing to be part of the T20 WC," Mitchell said. "It was a tight game against England at the semi-final of the tournament with only a few overs to go, Neesh hit a single down to long-off and I think I obstructed Rashid who was trying to get to the ball.
Mitchell's gesture in the T20 WC semi-final
The incident occurred in the T20 World Cup semi-final, when NZ required 34 (18) against England. On his follow-through, Adil Rashid (bowler) tried to stop the ball struck by James Neesham (batter) down the ground. However, the former collided with Mitchell (non-striker) in what was an unsuccessful attempt to stop the ball. Mitchell then refused the single as he was in the bowler's way.
Mitchell played a match-winning knock
Mitchell played a match-winning knock in the semi-final. He helped New Zealand chase down 167 with an incredible 72*-run knock. The 30-year-old brought the Kiwis home as they required 20 off two overs. Mitchell smashed 4 fours and as many sixes, having finished with a strike rate of 153.19. New Zealand entered the T20 World final for the first time.
A look at Mitchell's international career
Mitchell made his international debut in February 2019 in the 1st T20I against India. In a career spanning nearly three years, Mitchell has scored 392 runs from 25 T20Is at a strike rate of 134.71. Mitchell also has 303 and 112 runs in Tests and ODIs, respectively. Mitchell, who is also a medium-pacer, has accounted for eight wickets across formats.