After being adjudged the International Cricket Council's (ICC) Cricketer of the Year, India's premier off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin on Thursday termed the award as a recognition of his performance both with the bat and ball in the last couple of years.
Ashwin , who was also named the ICC Test Cricketer of the Year, said he was delighted to see the team on the right track in the longest format even after Mahendra Singh Dhoni retired from it.
"It's an absolute pleasure to be awarded with this great honour. It feels great to follow the likes of Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid in being named as the ICC Cricketer of the Year. To also win the ICC Test Cricketer of the Year makes it even better," said the Chennai tweaker, who helped India thrash New Zealand 3-0 and England 4-0 at home recently.
"There are a lot of people to thank for this wonderful achievement I have made. It has been a great couple of years but this year has been even more special. What is very noticeable is the way I have bowled and batted and the way I have gone about doing my business.
What is more important, as far as I am concerned, is the number of people who have gone behind my success."
"I'd like to dedicate this award to my family. I'd like to thank ICC and most importantly my team-mates. I'd also like to thank the support staff for our success. We've had a great transition ever since Mahendra Singh Dhoni hung up his boots. A young captain has taken over, we fell on the right track, and we now have a new bunch of boys," he added.
ICC Chief Executive David Richardson congratulated Ashwin, saying: "It has been a memorable period for Ashwin, whose consistent all round and match winning performances have been reflected in the MRF player rankings. He is justifiably now being counted among the best spinners of his generation.
"To win both the ICC Cricketer of the Year and ICC Test Cricketer of the Year awards is a major accomplishment. Ashwin's performances speak for themselves and he is a deserving recipient of the honours. I congratulate him on behalf of the ICC," he added.