Quinton de Kock’s growing status on the global stage underlined by his consistency across formats and performances under pressure last summer, saw him recognised as the nation’s best cricketer for last summer at Cricket South Africa’s prestigious Awards ceremony last night.
The 24 year-old was one of the central components in what was an outstanding season for the Proteas, in which they claimed three ODI series and three Tests series wins, the highlight of which was a third consecutive triumph in Australia.
De Kock shone brightly throughout the season. He began with an innings of 178 in the first ODI against Australia at Centurion – then the second highest score by a South African in ODIs, but subsequently overtaken by Faf du Plessis – and continued to dominate at the top of the order scoring six half-centuries and two hundreds.
He also notched up two centuries in the Test arena, the first also against the Australians, was instrumental in securing that series win Down Under. South Africa were 132/5 and in danger of not taking advantage of bowling out the home team for just 85 when De Kock joined Temba Bavuma at the crease in Hobart. Together they added 144, with Bavuma scoring 74 and De Kock 109. The 241-run lead proved insurmountable for the Australians, with South Africa winning by an innings and 80 runs.
Although he scored another century against Sri Lanka in the New Year’s Test, his next most valuable Test contribution was 91 against New Zealand in Wellington, where again, in partnership with Bavuma, he helped add 160 for the seventh-wicket to set up another Test and, ultimately, series win.
His batting aside, De Kock has shown great improvement with his wicketkeeping, taking some stunning catches while his increased confidence overall has made him an invaluable part of the on-field leadership group. De Kock emerged victorious in five categories last night; in addition to the main award, he claimed Test, ODI, the Players’ Player and the Fans’ favourite awards. Only Kagiso Rabada, who won six trophies last year, has won more.
This year, Rabada had to make do with just one title, the Delivery of the Season, for the ball that swung back at high speed to knock out Usman Khawaja’s off-stump in the Perth Test last November. In that same match, Bavuma’s remarkable run out of Dave Warner saw him pick up the Excellence Award for the moment of the season.
The Titans dominated on the domestic front claiming four awards; Farhaan Behardien as T20 Challenge Player of the Year, Henry Davids for the One-Day Cup and Aiden Markram Domestic Newcomer of the Year.
Mark Boucher, in his first season as a professional coach, was named Coach of the Year, while Duanne Olivier of the Knights, claimed the prize for the best Four-Day player as his team claimed the Sunfoil Series title, with the fast bowler finishing as the leading wicket-taker with 52.
SA Cricketer of the Year: Quinton de Kock
Test Cricketer of the Year: Quinton de Kock
ODI Cricketer of the Year: Quinton de Kock
T20 International Cricketer of the Year: Imran Tahir
SA Players’ Player of the Year: Quinton de Kock
SA Fans’ Player of the Year: Quinton de Kock
Award of Excellence: Temba Bavuma
Delivery of the Year: Kagiso Rabada
International Newcomer of the Year: Keshav Maharaj
Women’s Cricketer of the Year: Sune Luus
Women’s Players’ Player of the Year: Lizelle Lee
Women’s Newcomer of the Year: Laura Wolvaardt
Sunfoil Series Cricketer of the Season: Duanne Olivier (VKB Knights)
One-Day Cup Cricketer of the Season: Henry Davids (Titans)
CSA T20 Challenge Player of the Season: Farhaan Behardien (Titans)
Coach of the Year: Mark Boucher (Titans)
Players’ Player of the Season: Colin Ackermann (Warriors)
Newcomer of the Year: Aiden Markram (Titans)
Africa T20 Cup Player of the Tournament: Patrick Kruger (Northern Cape)
SACA Most Valuable Player: Colin Ackermann (Warriors)