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Steve Smith surprised after picked as Australia’s best of the year

Sydney: Australia batsman Steve Smith beat Pat Cummins by 12 votes to win the Allan Border Medal, the highest honor in Australian men’s cricket.

This is the third time he is winning the prestigious medal. He was pipped by David Warner by one vote last year.

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The right-handed batsman Steve Smith made the most runs for Australia across all formats in the voting period with 1,098 at an average of 45.75. The effort was built on four half-centuries and four centuries.

“I was a bit surprised. I don’t know, I didn’t feel like I had the biggest Test summer, which I think holds the most votes. I think my one-day cricket was pretty good last year, so I obviously got a lot of votes there,” said Smith after winning the medal.

“I didn’t expect it. I thought Marnus or Pat Cummins was probably the front-runners because they both had exceptional years.

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“I’m thrilled, plenty of hard work has gone into it. I’m just really honored to have won my third and hopefully I can keep producing results for Australia and win as many games as we can.”

Australia women’s team batter Beth Mooney won the Belinda Clark Award, which is given to the best woman cricketer.

Award winners: Allan Border Medal – Steve Smith; Belinda Clark Award – Beth Mooney; Men’s Test Player of the Year – Pat Cummins; Men’s ODI Player of the Year – Steve Smith; Women’s ODI Player of the Year — Rachael Haynes; Women’s T20 Player of the Year – Beth Mooney; Men’s T20I Player of the Year – Ashton Agar; Community Impact Award – Josh Lalor; Men’s Domestic Player of the Year – Shaun Marsh; Bradman Young Cricketer of the Year – Will Sutherland; Women’s Domestic Player of the Year – Elyse Vilanni; Betty Wilson Young Cricketer of the Year – Hannah Darlington; Australian Cricket Hall of Fame – Johnny Mullagh, Merv Hughes and Lisa Sthalekar.