2019 marked the start of the World Test Championship (WTC), which added a whole lot of context to Test cricket. No Test match in any series is a dead rubber now, even if the outcome of the series has already been decided by one team taking an unassailable lead.
Points are always at stake and each and every match-winning performance guides the team towards the WTC trophy.
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There were plenty of such performances by players from different Test sides in 2019 and these players, who put in such performances on a constant basis, are in line to get rewarded for their hard work as the game’s governing body will announce the ICC Test Player of the Year shortly.
Here are 3 players who could be named the 2019 ICC Test Player of the Year:
#1 Marnus Labuschagne
Labuschagne was not the first choice pick in Australia’s playing XI in Test matches, at least until half of 2019. He was a part of the Ashes squad but wasn’t originally selected to play in the first couple of games. He got into the playing XI as a concussion substitute when Steve Smith got hit by a bouncer from Jofra Archer.
Once he got into the XI, Labuschangne never looked back. He performed well enough in Smith’s absence to make sure he remained in the team even when the former Australian captain returned. The 25-year-old right-hander scored 353 runs at an average of 50.42 in the four games that he played in the 2019 Ashes with four half-centuries to his name.
Labuschagne carried his form into the Australian summer as well and scored three hundreds (two against Pakistan and one against New Zealand) to cement his place as the ideal no. 3 batsman for Australia. In a total of 11 Test matches that Labuschagne played in 2019, he scored 1104 runs averaging close to 65.