The accolades continue for Australian Test captain Michael Clarke who has been named Wisden’s Leading Cricketer in the World for 2012.
In the historic 150th edition of the world famous publication, Clarke was bestowed the honour on the back of a year that featured 1595 runs at an average of 106.33, placing him 346 runs clear of Alistair Cook as the leading run-scorer in 2012.
Commonly referred to as the ‘Bible of Cricket’, the Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack has named a Leading Cricketer in the World annually since 2004 based on performances in the previous calendar year. Regarded as one of the highest individual honours a cricketer can receive, Clarke becomes the third Australian after Ricky Ponting (2003) and Shane Warne (2004) to receive the accolade.
Clarke’s talent came to the fore in 2012, starting with his brilliant 329* against India at the SCG. This was followed by a double-century in Adelaide as Australia defeated India 4-0. He started the 2012-13 season right where he left off the previous summer by scoring back-to-back double centuries against the No. 1 ranked South Africans before finishing off the year with his first century in a Boxing Day Test against Sri Lanka.
Clarke broke numerous records throughout 2012. He became the first player in Test history to score four double-centuries in a year, as well as surpassing Ricky Ponting (2005) for the most runs in a calendar year by an Australian, despite batting 10 less times than Ponting did in that particular year.
In its 150-year history, cricket’s iconic book of record has covered more than 2,000 Test matches, honoured 570 Wisden Cricketers of the Year and published, in total, more than 133,400 pages.
List of Wisden Leading Cricketers in the World:
2003 Ricky Ponting (Australia)
2004 Shane Warne (Australia)
2005 Andrew Flintoff (England)
2006 Muttiah Muralitharan (Sri Lanka)
2007 Jacques Kallis (South Africa)
2008 Virender Sehwag (India)
2009 Virender Sehwag (India)
2010 Sachin Tendulkar (India)
2011 Kumar Sangakkara (Sri Lanka)
2012 Michael Clarke (Australia)
For more information on the 2013 Almanack and all-things Wisden visit www.wisden.com
Michael Clarke player profile
The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia
First Posted 10 April, 2013 6:00PM AEDT