The International Cricket Council’s annual awards were held today, and despite Graeme Swann missing out, England still emerged strongly ahead of this winters Ashes series.
Sachin Tendulkar was named ICC cricketer of the year after Graeme Swann gained a late nomination for the award, and whilst Swann will be disappointed on missing out, no Australians were in the running for the top prize.
Both England and Australia had three players nominated across the categories and with the Ashes first Test starting on November 25th, both teams are showing strong form for the series Australia are 4/6 to win.
England are 2/1 to win the first Test, and 9/4 to win the Test series in Australia, something they haven’t done since the 1986/87 tour.
Swann missed out on the cricketer of the year and Andrew Strauss missed out on the people’s choice award but there was good news for England in the bowling department.
Steven Finn was named the ICC’s emerging player of the year and England will hope their fast bowler can take his form from the summer into the Ashes series which starts in November.
Since making his debut against Bangladesh in March, Finn has taken 32 wickets in eight matches and is 4/1 to be England’s leading wicket-taker in the series.
Swann is currently the 1/1 favourite to be England’s top series wicket-taker with James Anderson, 3/1, and Stuart Broad, 4/1, also in the running.
Shane Watson, Mike Hussey and Tim Paine were all nominated for awards and England will need to be weary of Watson and the emerging Paine when they head down under.
Watson managed a century and a half-century in Australia’s defeat to India and Paine supported Watson with a first innings score of 92, despite batting at number seven.
England are 12/1 to win the series 3-2. See the full The Ashes betting odds market here.