Lee lands Aussie gong
Brett Lee has become only the second bowler to be named as the Australian Test Cricketer of the Year.
Last Updated: 26/02/08 12:49pm
Brett Lee has become only the second bowler to be named as the Australian Test Cricketer of the Year, while Matthew Hayden was named as the top one-day star.
Lee joined legend Glenn McGrath as the only two bowlers to pick-up the coveted Allan Border Medal as he received the gong for the first time.
31-year-old Lee endured a tough start to 2007 as he missed out on the World Cup in the Caribbean with an ankle injury, but responded in good style.
With McGrath retiring Lee picked up the mantle of Australia's main strike bowler and claimed 40 wickets in six Tests at 20.58.
Lee received 12 votes to win the Allan Border Medal, with Hayden next best with five.
"It's been a great summer, I've really, really enjoyed it - obviously with Glenn (McGrath) not being there, someone had to stand up," Lee said.
"I had a great pre-season after I had my ankle injury, so I had a chance to come back, do some weights, get really fit."
Left-handed opener Hayden did land the award for Australia's best one-day player, after hitting 1462 runs in the year, including 700 in Australia's World Cup-winning campaign.
"It's humbling to stand here and receive an award like this but knowing the fact you've got such magnificent players behind you every day of the week is certainly something we really savour," Hayden said.
Hayden also paid tribute to his fellow opener Adam Gilchrist, who will retire from international cricket at the end of the current Commonwealth Bank Series.
"It's been a pretty amazing partnership with Adam, he's been inspirational to all of us," Hayden continued.
"More to the point, we've just had an amazing side - Ricky (Ponting) has had a fantastic year again, he's copped a hard time recently.
"But everyone down through the order has contributed. It's been a very special year for all Australian cricketers."