Babar Azam, Fakhar Zaman nominated for ICC Player of the Month

DUBAI: Pakistani captain Babar Azam and batsman Fakhar Zaman have been nominated for ICC Player of the Month Awards for April.

The ICC announced the nominees for to recognise the best performances from both male and female cricketers across all forms of international cricket. Nepalese cricketer Kushal Bhurtel is the other nominee.

Babar played three ODIs against South Africa, stringing together fantastic performances. He scored 103 and 94, which won him two Player of the Match awards in the series victory.

He finished the series with 228 runs at a strike rate of 104. His performances helped him move ahead of Virat Kohli as the No.1 ranked ODI batsman and becoming the fourth Pakistan player to do so.

Babar played seven T20Is in April, four against South Africa and three against Zimbabwe, scoring a total of 305 runs with two half-centuries and a 59-ball 122 at the centurion. The highlight was a 197-run partnership with Mohammad Rizwan, the highest partnership in a T20I run chase.

Fakhar accompanies his fellow countryman in the list of nominees after a string of impressive outings. He scored a total of 302 runs at 100.66, with a strike rate of 111.43 in the three ODIs against South Africa.

In the series, he scored two centuries, including a knock of 193 in the second ODI. His two centuries enabled him to jump to a career-best seventh position in the ICC ODI batsmen’s rankings.

Nepal’s opening batsman Kushal Bhurtel created history when he scored three consecutive half-centuries and became the first player in T20I history to do so.

The 24-year-old was the leading run-scorer of the tournament with 278 runs as Nepal won their tri-series against Netherlands and Malaysia, scoring four half-centuries in the process.

Bhurtel’s brilliant showing granted him an entry into the top 100 of ICC Men’s T20I Batting Rankings. He currently sit at the 93rd position.