India captain Virat Kohli on Tuesday received the Polly Umrigar Award for being the best international cricketer for the 2016-17 and 2017-18 seasons at the annual BCCI awards. Kohli had a brilliant 2016-17 season as he went on to score 1332 runs in 13 games with an average of 74.
In the limited overs format, the Delhi batsman amassed 1516 runs in 27 games at a 84.22 average. In 2017-18 Kohli scored 896 runs at an average of 89.6 in six Test matches while in ODIs he averaged 75. “POLLY UMRIGAR AWARD for 2016-17 season goes to #TeamIndia Skipper @imVkohli at #NAMAN,” BCCI said on Twitter.
“The Skipper also receives the Polly Umrigar Award for his stupendous performances in the 2017-18 season too,” it added. Smriti Mandhana was named the international cricketer of the year 2017-18 in the women’s category while Harmanpreet Kaur received the player of the year for her phenomenal performances in the 2016-17 season.
Apart from international cricketers, domestic players received the awards. Jalaj Saxena, Parvez Rasool, Krunal Pandya were all awarded for their brilliant performances in the domestic circuit. Jalaj and Rasool were adjudged ‘Best All Rounders’ in Ranji Trophy while Krunal was rewarded for his performance in the Hazare one-day championship.
Former England captain Kevin Pietersen was also present during the award ceremony and delivered the keynote address for the MAK Pataudi Memorial lecture. With this, he became the first non-Indian cricketer to deliver the opening speech of the prestigious awards.