Johannesburg: AB de Villiers won as many as five awards, including the South African Cricketer of the Year for a second consecutive time at a gala function, hosted by Cricket South Africa (CSA) here.
AB de Villiers. Pic/AFP
Besides being voted the Cricketer of the Year for the second successive season, the South African batting great last night bagged four more accolades out of total nine major awards.
The 27-year-old batsman was named the ODI Cricketer of the Year, Cricketers' Cricketer of the Year, SA Fan's Cricketer of the Year and also got the 'So Good Award' for scoring the fastest century in the history of ODI cricket against the West Indies in December 2014.
Having won the South African Cricketer of the Year for a second consecutive year, De Villiers has matched the performance of former paceman Makhaya Ntini, who had received the award in 2005 and 2006.
Jacques Kallis (2004 and 2011) and Hashim Amla (2010 and 2013) are the other players to have been awarded the South African cricketer of the year twice, while previous winners were Shaun Pollock (2007), Dale Steyn (2008), Graeme Smith (2009), and Vernon Philander (2012).
The Test cricketer of the year award went to Hashim Amla, who is the only other South African player to have won five awards earlier in 2010. Other major awards were clinched by Morne van Wyk, who won the T20 Cricketer of the Year, Dale Steyn received the Delivery of the Year and Rilee Rossouw was named the SA Newcomer of the Year.
Shabnim Ismail got the Women's Cricketer of the Year award. CSA Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat heaped praise on de Villiers for his outstanding performance last year.
"AB is just so special and surely he must be the best all-round cricketer in the world. His performances are sheer class and his No. 2 ranking in Test match cricket and No. 1 in ODI cricket only tells a part of his amazing skills.
"He has always been an entertainer and a trendsetter while at the same time he has that unique ability to dig really deep when it matters.
AB de Villiers has modestly taken limited overs batting to a new level and he has done it with style and panache that is simply beyond the reach of most. He is a true batting genius! He now holds the world records for the fastest 50, 100 and 150 in ODI cricket.
"We are proud of the scale of his achievements and, more importantly, the manner in which he does it. He is an exceptionally talented cricketer who always adapts to the needs of the team," he said. Lorgat congratulated not only the award winners but also other cricketers who contributed to the success of the South African team.
"Our Proteas have again displayed true world-class performances in the past year and I salute not only the award winners but all of them for a year of great performances," said Lorgat.