T20I batting nominees January 12, 2017

Cool, cool runnings

Nerveless final-over blasting, composed chasing, and mature risk-management - that's how our nominees batted in T20Is this year
34

Play 02:31

Click here for the T20I bowling shortlist

Virat Kohli
49 v Pakistan
Asia Cup, Mirpur

Thirteen wickets had fallen for 91 runs in a sizzling fixture before Kohli doused the flames with this mini-epic. On a venomous pitch, he weathered a storm of swing and seam from Mohammad Amir to guide India's chase of 84, which had been perilously placed at 8 for 3. Kohli had scored six off his first 16 balls, and just two off ten against Amir before he hit back-to-back boundaries off the left-armer in the seventh over to set him on his way. That he scored at less than a run a ball highlights how hard he was made to work for his runs, and accentuated the brilliance of his seven sublime fours, countering wicked lateral movement with confident footwork and whipcord wrists.

Sabbir Rahman
80 v Sri Lanka
Asia Cup, Mirpur

There is something fiercely and symbolically new-age-Bangladesh about Sabbir and it was his burning confidence that defined this innings as he brazenly moved on from a mix-up with his captain, Mushfiqur Rahim, that left Bangladesh 26 for 3. Muscling boundaries from full balls with a stable base and powerful forearms, Sabbir elevated his team to 147 for 7 and a 23-run victory. He came to the crease with Bangladesh 1 for 0 and left it with them 108 for 4, having scored 80 - the highest contribution percentage by a batsman when his wicket has fallen at a total of 100 or more.

Joe Root made the task of overcoming a total of 229 look easy in the World T20 © Getty Images

Mahmudullah
22 not out v Pakistan
Asia Cup, Mirpur

Mahmudullah's calm was a counterpoint to the fervent chaos of the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur as he coolly propelled Bangladesh to a five-wicket victory and a place in the Asia Cup final in a breathless match that swung back and forth. With 34 required from 23, chasing 130, Mahmudullah thrashed Mohammad Irfan over extra cover for six. Then with ten required from eight, he intelligently guided Mohammad Sami through backward point for four, and from the first ball of the final over, he hit a bottom-handed drag through midwicket to seal the win. Cue bedlam.

Chris Gayle
100 not out v England
World T20, Mumbai

West Indies stamped their authority on the World T20 as Gayle's brutal power-hitting laid waste to England's score of 182 with 11 balls to spare. This was vintage Gayle: patient at first - he faced six balls in the first five overs and had scored ten off nine until the last ball of the Powerplay - and frighteningly selective in attack - five times hitting consecutive boundaries and once hitting three in a row. Only Chris Jordan escaped the onslaught as Gayle tossed England's attack around the Wankhede like a rag doll, clubbing 11 sixes and scoring at a strike rate north of 187 against five of the six bowlers he faced.

No superstar, but Lendl Simmons knows how to get the job done © Getty Images

Joe Root
83 v South Africa
World T20, Mumbai

England scored fewer than six runs an over just once in their hyper-energised pursuit of South Africa's mammoth 229, and it was Root's 83, coming off just 44 balls, that lifted England to the target with two balls to spare. This was a heady fusion of conventional technique and modern mentality - Root hardly looked rushed as he busily maintained a strike rate of over 150 for most of his innings. He struck four sixes and six fours but perhaps more impressively faced just four dot balls as he alleviated any build-up of pressure in the chase with expert placement of the field and tireless running.

Virat Kohli
82 not out v Australia
World T20, Mohali

Described by Kohli at the time as his finest T20 innings - and although he'd play a fair few more by the time the year was out - this knock, coming as it did in a virtual quarter-final of a global event hosted by India, still must rank among his very best. This was Kohli in chase mode; the embodiment of focused intensity. Yuvraj Singh's 18-ball 21, which left India requiring 67 from the last six overs, was merely another obstacle to overcome as Kohli almost single-handedly took India to the semi-finals. He ran Australia ragged, scampering seven twos, to go alongside his 11 boundaries, three of them consecutive in the 18th over and four more in the penultimate over.

Hot pursuit: Virat Kohli averages 122.83 in successful chases in T20Is © Getty Images

Lendl Simmons
82 not out v India
World T20, semi-final, Mumbai

India, defending 193, thought they had this semi-final won when they dismissed Chris Gayle for five, when they dismissed Marlon Samuels for 8, twice when they had Simmons caught off no-balls, and again when they thought they had him caught on the boundary but Ravindra Jadeja had made contact with the rope. Simmons, unperturbed by the loss of his more celebrated team-mates and his outrageously good fortune, emerged from the shadows to play an innings of immense character. Happy at first to turn over the strike to Johnson Charles, Simmons had scored 23 off 20 at one stage before kicking on after the tenth over to score 59 off his last 31 balls. After his second no-ball dismissal, he sent the free hit that followed into the stands. This was an innings that silenced the Wankhede.

Carlos Brathwaite
34 not out v England
World T20 final, Kolkata

After 39 overs of mind-bending twists and turns, the World T20 final had come down to the last over. West Indies required 19, Ben Stokes was the bowler, and Brathwaite, having come to the crease in the 16th over but having only faced six balls since - one brilliantly ramped for four - was on strike. What followed will forever be etched into cricketing legend. Four balls, four sixes. Each of the four deliveries was full and straight, and each time Brathwaite's bat - a mere toothpick against his enormous frame - scythed down and through the ball, dispatching three towering sixes over the leg side and one over long-off. Brathwaite, arms outstretched, bellowed into the night sky; Stokes was left on his haunches, teary-eyed in the middle of the pitch as the West Indian players charged onto the field in celebration.

Glenn Maxwell's 145 not out is the second highest T20I total © Associated Press

Marlon Samuels
85 not out v England
World T20 final, Kolkata

While Brathwaite's innings stole the headlines, the foundations of the West Indies victory in the final were laid by Samuels' 85. In contrast to the brevity of Brathwaite's cameo, the 66 balls faced by Samuels made it the sixth-longest T20I innings in history. Chasing 156, the West Indies top order was reeling at 11 for 3 before Samuels began mapping the long road back. On two occasions he hit three boundaries in an over, off Chris Jordan in the sixth and Liam Plunkett in the 15th, but otherwise this was an innings marked by mature risk management. Samuels, a powerful player but no Brathwaite, knew all he could realistically do was take West Indies within striking distance. He did that and, for the second time in four years, was named Man of the Match in the final.

Glenn Maxwell
145 not out v Sri Lanka
first T20I, Pallekele

An innings that felt like the future. Maxwell took his wristy pyrotechnics to the top of the order for the first time in T20 internationals and marked the occasion with a scintillating hundred off just 49 balls. He fell just short of the record for the highest T20I score, held by the man he replaced as opener due to injury, Aaron Finch, but his 145 not out propelled Australia to the highest T20I score and joint highest T20 score of all time, against a hapless Sri Lankan bowling attack. Maxwell spared no one in his onslaught, scoring at a strike rate of at least 150 against every bowler.

Click here for the T20I bowling shortlist

Freddie Wilde is a freelance T20 journalist. @fwildecricket

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • cricfan95000573 on February 7, 2017, 10:32 GMT

    1st choice marlon sammuales or 2nd sabbir ahmed is worthy of this

  • cricfan14809397 on January 31, 2017, 6:24 GMT

    Carlos Brathwaite, no doubt about that WT20 final inning

  • NikhilSachdev on January 20, 2017, 14:29 GMT

    Lendle Simmons for sure. After all, he brought the favourites down on their own soil. Loved it!!!

  • cricfan78122035 on January 18, 2017, 8:48 GMT

    Windies won this nominations

  • pragmatist on January 17, 2017, 15:02 GMT

    Has to be Brathwaite. Incredible performance under any circumstances, but in the World Cup final? No other contendor for me.

  • cricfan71136805 on January 17, 2017, 14:30 GMT

    This one is very simple. West Indies all the way. 1. Braithwaite 2. Lendl Simmons 3. Marlon Samuels

  • cricfan90310098 on January 17, 2017, 13:58 GMT

    Virat's 82 vs Aus for sure will win it.

  •   Subhransu Sekhar Sahoo on January 17, 2017, 13:06 GMT

    1) virat 2) Root 3)Carlos Brathwaite

  • AjitPS on January 17, 2017, 12:11 GMT

    1) Virat v Aus 2) Carlos Brathwaite 3) Lendl Simmons/ Virat v Pak

  •   Vinil Krishna Satrasala on January 17, 2017, 12:01 GMT

    I would like to nominate Brathwaite innings in the T20 worldcup final against engalsnd as the best T20 innings in a final

  • No featured comments at the moment.