England wicket-keeper Matt Prior has been named as the country’s Men’s Cricketer of the Year for 2012-13, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced on Monday.

[caption id="attachment_917" align="alignright" width="225"]Matt Prior is the first England wicket-keeper to win the award (Photo: Getty Images) Matt Prior is the first England wicket-keeper to win the award (Photo: Getty Images)[/caption]

Prior, 31, is the first wicket-keeper to claim the award.

His heroics behind the wicket and with the bat earned him the award. He scored seven Test half-centuries overall and a match-saving century in England’s most recent Test Match against New Zealand in Auckland.

The other candidates in competition with Prior were James Anderson – the last year’s winner – and England Test and ODI captain Alastair Cook. The members of the cricket media decided the winner through voting.

England bowler Katherine Brunt won Women’s Cricketers of the Year for 2012-2013 award. She beat off competition from Sarah Taylor, Holly Colvin and Charlotte Edwards to win the title for the third time after 2006 and 2010.

Brunt picked up 12 wickets in recent ICC Women’s World Cup campaign in India.

Moreover, Essex and England Under-19’s wicketkeeper-batsman Ben Foakes was awarded the England Development Programme Cricketer of the Year while the England Disability Cricketer of the Year award went to the Visually Impaired squad’s Matthew Dean.

The players were honoured during a dinner held in the Long Room at Lord’s on Monday evening. The event was hosted by the sponsor of all England’s cricket teams, ECB and Brit Insurance.

The awards were given after judging the players’ performances in all formats of international cricket over the past year. The duration ranges from last summer’s domestic international programme to the recent winter tours.

Matt Prior’s unbeaten century in the recent Auckland Test Match which helped England draw the Test series against New Zealand also won the TwelfthMan Cricketing Moment of the Year Award, voted for by members of ECB’s TwelfthMan fan community on Facebook.

In a statement, ECB Chief Executive David Collier said: “There have some memorable individual performances across all our England teams over the past year – a 12-month period which saw the England Men’s team win a Test Series in India for the first time in 28 years and the England Women complete a clean sweep of four NatWest series wins at home last summer.

“We congratulate the winners, Matt, Katherine, Matthew and Ben, on their individual achievements and thank all those who took part in the judging process as well as our team sponsor Brit, and the MCC, for their help in staging our annual awards ceremony.”
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