The International Cricket Council's cricketer of the year is the most prestigious award in the game, a recognition of a player's individual excellence.
While cricket is a team game, some players rise above the rest and the world body has been rewarding their contributions since 2004 in the form of the Sir Garfield Sobers trophy for the best men's player of the year.
The awards have been dominated by batsmen and all-rounders, with Australia quick Mitchell Johnson and India spinner Ravichandran Ashwin the only bowlers to receive the honour.
Then on Monday, Pakistan left-arm quick Shaheen Afridi became the first from his country and the youngest recipient, at 21, to receive the annual award.
Afridi picked up 78 wickets in 36 international matches in 2021 but his most memorable effort was the opening burst against India at the T20 World Cup in Dubai which not only set up a 10-wicket win but also handed his team a first win over their neighbours in a World Cup.
Afridi famously trapped Rohit Sharma first ball before castling KL Rahul with an in-swinger to erase the pain of 12 successive World Cup defeats against India.
"In 2021 our team performed really well and we won some very good matches," Afridi said after being given the award.
"I had many good performances including five-fors in Tests but the most memorable one for me would be the one we won against India," he added.
"It was a historical match and matches with India draw a big audience."