Sri Lanka's first test win since the retirement of Muttiah Muralitharan brought the curtain down on a fantastic year of cricket. India won the World Cup in their own country, defeating a spirited Sri Lanka in the final, as England stormed to the top of the test rankings. Here is my cricket team of 2011, which after a great year for England, is not surprisingly filled with members of Andy Flowers's successful side.
Alistair Cook - England 927 Test runs in a fantastic year for Cook (which doesn’t include the runs he made in the first four tests in the 2010-11 Ashes), as well as earning the England ODI captaincy ensures the Essex batsmen opens the side. A top score of 294 vs. India was the highlight.
Shane Watson - Australia A peripheral figure for the Aussies in all formats of the game, smashing 185 not out in a record innings vs. Bangladesh. The knock included an incredible 15 sixes to ease past the previous record of sixes in an innings. One problem for Watson was converting test fifties into hundreds; however he deserves his place in the side.
Jonathon Trott- England The South African born Englishman averages over 50 in both formats of the game, and the Warwickshire batsmen like England has had a fantastic year.
Rahul Dravid - India despite India having an average year, ‘the wall’ has been in arguably the form of his life. No one score more test runs then Dravid in 2011, which included five hundreds in his twenty three innings.
Ian Bell - England The only batsmen to average over 100 in the year of 2011, with an incredible five hundreds in just 11 test innings. A brilliant 235 vs. India, which was also his maiden test double hundred, in the fourth test helped England to a comprehensive whitewash over the then number one ranked test side.
Virat Kohli - India Surprisingly unused in the test side, Kohli topped the ODI run scorer list. 12 scores of over 50, including four tons, Kohli helped India to World Cup success in their own country at the start of the year.
Kumar Sangakkara - Sri Lanka Despite his countries struggles, predominately in the test format of the game, Sangakkara has had another brilliant year. Sangakkara finished the year with the second most amount of test runs as well as the fourth highest ODI run scorer in 2011. This year he also recorded an incredible eighth test double hundred, with only Brain Lara and Don Bradman scoring more in the games history.
Stuart Broad - England After missing most of England’s ashes winning tour, Broad bounced back brilliantly in 2011 with 33 test wickets in just the seven matches. The Nottinghamshire bowler was a key part of England’s surge to the top of the test rankings. In 2011 Broad also inherited the T/20 captaincy.
Saeed Ajmal - Pakistan 84 international wickets for Ajmal it was a very productive year for the Pakistan spinner, as no one took more test wickets then him in 2011. Despite not featuring frequently at the World Cup, Ajmal took 34 of his 84 wickets in the ODI format of the game.
Vernon Philander - South Africa Despite just the three test matches, the South African had a fantastic year. He and Steyn so famously destroyed Australia, bowling Michael Clarke’s side out for just 47. Averaging eight wickets per test match during 2011, Philander will look to make 2012 a better year.
James Anderson - England Anderson had a fantastic year as the leader of England’s formidable bowling attack. The Lancashire bowler missed just one of England’s eight test matches during 2011, ironically only one of the two tests they didn’t win the whole year, as Anderson took 35 test wickets and helped England to the number one ranked side.