Johannesburg: Sri Lankan batsman Tillakaratne Dilshan has won the ICC Twenty20 International Performance of the Year award in recognition of his 96 not out off 57 balls at the World Twenty20 2009 in England.
This is the second year the award has been given to recognise the most impressive performance by a player in Twenty20 internationals during the 12-month voting period, continuing to mark the advent of the shortest format of the game.
During the semi-final of the World Twenty20 in June this year, Dilshan smashed 96 not out in 57 balls against West Indies at the Oval. The performance included two sixes and 12 fours and helped steer his side into the finals of the tournament after they beat the opposition by 57 runs.
The award rounds off a good year of Twenty20 cricket for Dilshan who took the World Twenty20 by storm after showcasing his astonishing 'Dilscoop' - a flick-shot over his head - and also picked up the player of the tournament after scoring 317 runs at 52.83.
According to the ICC Awards 25-person voting academy Dilshan's effort was the most impressive performance of the voting period from August 13, 2008 to August 24, 2009.
His performance beat competition from West Indies' Chris Gayle for his 88 off 50 balls against Australia, also during the 2009 World Twenty20 at the Oval; Umar Gul's 5 for 6 for Pakistan against New Zealand in the same tournament as well as twin efforts from Shahid Afridi - a blitzkreig 51 off 34 balls and 2 for 16 against South Africa in the semi-final.
Collecting his award from last year's winner, Yuvraj Singh, Dilshan said: "This is a great feeling for me. I can't forget about that innings - it was so important and I was really happy about my overall performance in that tournament. It was a thrill for me to do well in England and do well for my team.