The winners of the September 2022 ICC Player of the Month awards were revealed today by the International Cricket Council (ICC). The ICC Men’s Player of the Month award goes to Pakistan’s Mohammad Rizwan, and the ICC Women’s Player of the Month title goes to India’s inspirational skipper Harmanpreet Kaur. After a fantastic scoring streak throughout September, Rizwan wins the ICC Men’s Player of the Month award for the first time, defeating other nominees Cameron Green (Australia) and Axar Patel (India) to the honour.
The Pakistani player scored a staggering 553 runs from ten T20 Internationals, including games in the Men’s Asia Cup and a subsequent home T20 International series against a visiting England team. The talismanic opener produced seven half-centuries in addition to a stunning batting average of 69.12 over the month, demonstrating why he is ranked first in the MRF Tyres ICC Men’s T20I batter rankings.
Rizwan demonstrated his importance during Pakistan’s ascent to the Asia Cup Final by scoring three half-centuries in the latter stages of the competition, including scores of 71 against India and 55 in the Final against eventual champion Sri Lanka. Rizwan will be a key player for Pakistan heading into the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup in six days. He continued his strong play into the series against England, scoring four more half-centuries, with his unbeaten 88 in partnership with captain Babar Azam being the standout as his team won by ten wickets in the second T20I while attempting to reach an intimidating total of 199. “I would want to thank Almighty Allah and express my deep happiness to everybody that assisted me to obtain this achievement,” Rizwan said after winning the most recent ICC Men’s Player of the Month award. “I want to give my high appreciation to all my teammates as they made things easy for me. These achievements boost your confidence. I am happy with my performance and I would like to take this momentum forward in Australia.
“I would like to dedicate this award to the people in Pakistan who are affected by the floods and climate change. Hopefully this will bring smiles on their faces.” Thanks to her pivotal contribution in her team’s first ODI series triumph in England since 1999, Harmanpreet Kaur becomes India’s first recipient of the ICC Women’s Player of the Month award. During the ODI series, the India captain was at her magnificent best, amassing 221 runs over the course of the three games, keeping a strike rate of 103.47, and only getting removed once. In the opening game of the series at Hove, she demonstrated composure and grace, as her 74 not out allowed her side easily chase down England’s 228-run total to win by seven wickets.
While that was spectacular, the second showdown was unquestionably the high point of her month. When she batted first, she took the lead with an exciting 143 not out from 111 balls. The whole range of Kaur’s strokeplay was on display as she smashed 18 fours and four maximums. As England struggled to reach the 334 goal set by the tourists, Kaur and her compatriots made history. By defeating her countrywoman Smriti Mandhana and Bangladesh captain Nigar Sultana in the worldwide voting among media representatives, members of the ICC Hall of Fame, past international players, and fans registered at icc-cricket.com, Kaur earns her first victory. “It was nice to be nominated for the award, and to win it is an amazing feeling,” Kaur said after receiving the ICC Women’s Player of the Month honour for September. It is really humbling to win after being nominated alongside Smriti and Nigar.