Experts, former cricketers, and fans alike have criticized the International Cricket Council (ICC) for awarding the Player of the Tournament to the Australian opening batter, David Warner, instead of Pakistan’s captain, Babar Azam, who statistically outperformed the former during the T20 World Cup.
According to the statistics, David Warner made a total of 289 runs, including 3 half-centuries, in 7 innings. He had an average of 48.16 and a strike rate of 146.70 in the mega event. His highest score in the tournament was 89 not out while he remained not out in 6 out of 7 innings.
On the other hand, Babar Azam made a total of 303 runs, including 4 half-centuries, in 6 innings. He had an average of 60.60 and a strike rate of 126.25 in the mega event. His highest score in the tournament was 70 while he remained not out in 5 out of 6 innings.
Despite being the leading run-getter of the mega event, the ICC-nominated jury decided to award the Player of the Tournament to David Warner.
The jury for this award consisted of 5 members. 3 of them were ICC’s TV commentary representatives while the remaining were media representatives.
The commentary representatives included Ian Bishop, former West Indian cricketer, Natalie Germanos, South African sports broadcaster, and Shane Watson, former Australian all-rounder. The media representatives included Laurence Booth, British sports journalist at Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday, and Shahid Hashmi, Pakistani sports journalist at AFP and ARY.
In light of the above-mentioned stats, experts, former cricketers, and fans have accused the ICC jury of being biased towards Babar Azam.
In a similar development, another ICC panel excluded Mohammad Rizwan from the 2021 T20 World Cup’s Team of the Tournament. Although the panel made Babar Azam the captain of the 12-man squad—probably to rectify the earlier error— Rizwan failed to gain attention from the panel despite being the third top scorer of the tournament.