Australian Cricket Awards 2023: The good, the bad and the ugly

Pat Cummins and David Warner were both at the centre of embarrassing situations at the annual night of nights.

Pat Cummins and David Warner, pictured here at the Australian Cricket Awards.
Pat Cummins and David Warner at the Australian Cricket Awards. Image: Getty

😀 The good: Steve Smith and Beth Mooney

😔 The bad: Pat Cummins and Meg Lanning's autocue fail

😡 The ugly: David Warner in fresh awards controversy

The Australian Cricket Awards threw up a raft of headlines - some good and some bad. From Steve Smith and Beth Mooney making history to David Warner's award sparking controversy, here's our recap:

Steve Smith and Beth Mooney rewarded for stellar years

Smith won the Allan Border Medal for the fourth time, joining Ricky Ponting and Michael Clarke as the only players ever to achieve that feat. The former captain averaged 71.92 in Test matches in the past 12 months, and over 55 in all formats.

"I hope there's more to come," he told reporters on Monday night. "That's what I strive for every day, to be the best player that I can be. I made some adjustments in the last six months. It took me a while to do, I had to work through a few things. It's started to work well for me. Hopefully I can just keep getting better and better."

Mooney won the women's equivalent (the Belinda Clark Award) for the second time in her career and was also named women's ODI player of the year. She scored a career-best 133 in her most recent ODI to help Australia complete a clean sweep against Pakistan.


Pat Cummins and Meg Lanning's awkward fail

The men's and women's team captains are in their element on the field, but clearly not so good in front of an autocue. Cummins and Lanning were hilariously roasted after bumbling their way through an introduction to the awards on Monday night.

At one point Lanning asked Cummins: “Talking of statues, do you think we’ll ever see Scotty Boland’s statue at the MCG?” Cummins then replied: “I hope so. I’d vote for that. I know all the MCG crowd wants to see that. Sorry Uzzie (Khawaja), there is one people’s champ.”

Lanning then didn't realise it was her turn to speak, with Cummins looking awkwardly down the camera lens in silence. The captains then broke out laughing as Lanning realised her gaffe.

“Is it my turn? It’s actually my turn to speak," Lanning said, before wrapping up. “Just really good luck to everyone tonight, hope it’s a great evening and hope you have fun," she said. Cummins added: “Far too much of us. Let’s get the night started. Thank you.”


David Warner's ODI award sparks outrage

Warner found himself at the centre of fresh controversy regarding an award when he was named the men's ODI player of the year. Warner's 552 runs were the most amongst all Australian players throughout the voting period, however they came at a significantly worse average than that of Smith and Travis Head.

Head (550 runs) and Smith (539) both scored fewer runs than Warner, but Head averaged 68.75 and Smith 67.37. Fans and commentators were also left fuming that Adam Zampa wasn't even nominated despite taking 30 wickets at the brilliant average of 17.37. Zampa was recently named in the ICC's ODI world team of the year, but didn't even get nominated for Aussie ODI player of the year.

David Warner, pictured here at the Australian Cricket Awards.
David Warner was controversially named men's ODI player of the year. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)

The controversy around Warner's gong came after he was named player of the series after Australia's 2-0 Test victory over South Africa - a decision that also sparked outrage. Warner scored a brilliant 200 in the second Test at the MCG, but many felt the likes of Head, Smith and Pat Cummins were better throughout the whole series.


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