Australia skipper Michael Clarke has been given the title after a superb year in 2012.
Cricket’s most famous publication Wisden, known fondly as the ‘Cricket Bible’, has named Australian captain Michael Clarke as its Leading Cricketer in the World for 2012.
The top prize in the cricket Almanack has been awarded to legendary players such as Ricky Ponting, Sachin Tendulkar and Shane Warne in the last 10 years.
Yet despite Australian cricket being at one of its all-time lows, their skipper is leading the way with some impressive performances with the bat.
Clarke earned his latest title by scoring 1595 Test runs in 2012 at an average of 106.33, putting him a healthy 346 runs ahead of nearest competitor Alastair Cook.
The Aussie skipper’s year started brilliantly in January when he hit an unbeaten 329 against India at the SCG – Clarke’s highest career score to date.
The 31-year-old topped off a 4-0 series win against the Indians with a double-century at Adelaide, before taking his form into the visit of South Africa; hitting back-to-back double tons against the No.1 side in the world.
Clarke’s dominant 12 months as a batsman saw his Test average rise form 45.82 to the impressive 52.33 it is at currently, as well as becoming the first player to score four double-centuries in a calendar year.
An incredible 2012 was made all the more sweeter for the Australian as it was his first full 12 months as captain of the side. However, 2013 hasn’t started so brightly for Clarke after a humiliating 4-0 whitewash for his team in India.
Despite the Indian result being Australia’s worst series defeat since 1970, their skipper still led from the front and was the only Aussie to score a century in any of the five-day matches in the sub-continent.
Watch Clarke’s outstanding 329 not-out below: