Ben Stokes was the hero for England as they won their first-ever Cricket World Cup by somehow finishing on top in a nail-biting final.
The final finished in a tie after 102 overs of cricket and England were only awarded the World Cup on the basis of more boundaries scored in the match. Stokes was the man of the match as he dragged his side right through to the end.
Stokes was born in Christchurch, New Zealand and thus was nominated for the New Zealander of the Year award after his all-round heroics in the tournament. The English all-rounder, however, has turned down the opportunity to win the award and has instead put NZ cricket team captain Kane Williamson’s name forward.
“I am flattered to be nominated for New Zealander of the Year. I am proud of my New Zealand and Maori heritage but it would not sit right with me to be nominated for this prestigious award.
“There are people who deserve this recognition more and have done a lot more for the country of New Zealand. I have helped England lift a World Cup and my life is firmly established in the UK – it has been since I was 12-years old.
“I feel the whole country should align their support to New Zealand captain Kane Williamson. He should be revered as a kiwi legend. He led his team in this World Cup with distinction and honour. He was the player of the tournament and an inspirational leader of men.
“He shows humility and empathy to every situation and is an all-round good bloke. He typifies what it is to be a New Zealander. He would be a worthy recipient of this accolade. New Zealand, fully support him. He deserves it and gets my vote,” Stokes said in the statement.