The Castrol Awards for Cricketing Excellence

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The Castrol Awards for Cricketing Excellence

Award winners of the past
"The will to win; the determination to be number one"

The Castrol Awards for Cricketing Excellence, ever since their institution in 1998, have been regarded as among the most prestigious of Indian sports awards. Only three years old, the Awards have already made a name for themselves for their transparent and honest evaluation system, as well as their attempts to encourage talent in both international and domestic arenas.

The period of evaluation runs from 1st October to 30th of September, having been adjusted for the onset of the monsoon season. For a player to be eligible, he should have played a minimum of three Tests or five one-day internationals. Performances at the international level are monitored in the first stage, with points being awarded for runs, wickets and catches, weighting each success in light of the rest of the team's performance. At the end of the Castrol year, the top five players are nominated as finalists.

Final judging takes place in true democratic fashion; all the cricketers who have represented India at the international level vote for their choice of winner. The player with the maximum votes is honoured, at a function glittering with the stars of the cricket field, as the Castrol Indian Cricketer of the Year. While the top award carries an award of five lakhs as well as an exquisitely crafted trophy, the other four finalists also receive awards of Rs. 50,000 each.

The pedigree of the past winners is outstanding; Sachin Tendulkar, who won it in 1997-98 and 1999-2000, is arguably the world's best batsman and one of the finest players of all time. Rahul Dravid, the winner for the 1998-99 season, is renowned for his impeccable technique and concentration powers, and has even been called the best contemporary player of spin by none other than Shane Warne.

The five nominees for this year's awards, in alphabetical order, are Ajit Agarkar, Rahul Dravid, Sourav Ganguly, VVS Laxman and Sachin Tendulkar.

The Castrol Awards function, one of the high points of the social calendar, is an exclusive affair and an invitation-only event, restricted even to prominent people in the media and cricketing circuits only 350 people, including past and present cricketers as well as members of the press, are allowed into the ceremony. Here, however, is a way that you now can be part of that exclusive club.

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