Mitchell Starc's swipe at Shane Warne after winning Allan Border Medal

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·Sports Editor
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Mitchell Starc, pictured here taking a dig at Shane Warne after winning the Allan Border Medal.
Mitchell Starc took a dig at Shane Warne after winning the Allan Border Medal. Image: Channel 7/Getty

Mitchell Starc has taken a cheeky jab at Shane Warne after winning his maiden Allan Border Medal.

Starc was named Allan Border Medallist as Australia's best male cricketer of the year on Saturday, with Ashleigh Gardner winning the Belinda Clark Award for the first time.

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Starc was crowned as the winner of men's cricket's top gong, beating out Mitch Marsh by a single vote to claim the award in a broadcast-only ceremony.

Starc produced a brilliant Ashes campaign as Australia thrashed England 4-0, while at times acting as Australia's senior bowler with Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood missing matches.

He was also named as the male one-day player of the year, starring in the sole series against West Indies midway through 2021.

The left-armer becomes just the fifth bowler in the 22-year history of the Allan Border Medal to claim the major men's prize — with Cummins, Mitchell Johnson, Brett Lee and Glenn McGrath all one-time winners.

Speaking to Channel 7 after winning the AB Medal, Starc slipped in a cheeky dig at Aussie legend Warne - who has been among Starc's harshest critics.

Warne called for Starc to be dropped from the Test side in the lead-up to the Ashes, with Starc responding by taking a wicket with the first ball of the series.

Mitchell Starc, pictured here with the Allan Border Medal at Manuka Oval.
Mitchell Starc poses with the Allan Border Medal at Manuka Oval. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

In commentary for Fox Sports at the time, Warne said Starc's delivery was simply a half-volley on leg stump that Rory Burns missed.

In reality, the ball swung a mile around Burns' legs to cannon into leg stump.

Starc was asked about the ball on Saturday, saying: "It was a straight half-volley on leg stump I think someone said".

Starc said the key to his phenomenal series, in which he took 19 wickets, was blocking the 'outside noise' from those not within the team environment - another clear reference to Warne.

Fans were also quick to mention Warne while congratulating Starc on social media.

Ash Gardner makes history with top women's award

It was also Starc's work with the bat that helped him snare the top gong, rising above Ben Stokes in the ICC's Test all-rounder rankings.

In all, he took a combined 43 wickets at an average of 24.4 across all formats while still averaging 26.8 with the bat in 2021.

Travis Head finished third in the tally and was named Test player of the year after his big Ashes series, while Mitch Marsh won the T20 award after starring in Australia's World Cup win.

Meanwhile, Gardner became the first Indigenous player to claim one of Australian cricket's top awards.

Ashleigh Gardner, pictured here posing with the Belinda Clark Medal.
Ashleigh Gardner poses with the Belinda Clark Medal. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

The 24-year-old matured into one of Australia's best players in the past year, with her half-century in the first innings in the current Canberra Test also not counted in the voting period.

Such was her year, she finished in Australia's top-three run-scorers and top-five wicket-takers during the voting period across all formats.

Her year was highlighted by an unbeaten 73 in a successful chase against New Zealand in March, which was one of four half-centuries in the past year as she averaged 35.1 in all formats.

It helped the NSW star win the main award on 54 votes, ahead of last year's winner Beth Mooney on 47 and Alyssa Healy on 39.

Healy did win Australia's one-day player of the year, while Mooney claimed the T20 honour.

AWARD WINNERS:

Belinda Clark Award - Ashleigh Gardner

Allan Border Medal - Mitchell Starc

Female ODI Player of the Year - Alyssa Healy

Female T20I Player of the Year - Beth Mooney

Male Test Player of the Year - Travis Head

Male ODI Player of the Year - Mitchell Starc

Male T20I Player of the Year - Mitchell Marsh

Female Domestic Player of the Year - Elyse Villani

Male Domestic Player of the Year - Travis Head

Betty Wilson Young Cricketer of the Year - Darcie Brown

Bradman Young Cricketer of the Year - Tim Ward

Community Champion Award - Zoe Cooke

Australian Cricket Hall of Fame inductees - Raelee Thompson and Justin Langer

with AAP

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