Nick Compton named among Wisden's cricketers of the year

Nick Compton in action against New Zealand in March

England batsman Nick Compton has been named one of Wisden's five cricketers of the year.

The 29-year-old Somerset player is the only Englishman on this year's list and emulates grandfather Denis, who earned the accolade in 1939.

West Indian batsman Marlon Samuels and the South African trio of Hashim Amla, Jacques Kallis and Dale Steyn are also recognised.

Australia captain Michael Clarke is named leading cricketer in the world.

The cricketers of the year are nominated for their achievements in the previous English summer and can only receive a Wisden nomination once in their career.

Compton amassed 1,494 first-class runs last term at an average of 99.6.

He narrowly missed out on becoming the first player since 1988 to score 1,000 first-class runs before the end of May.

But his form earned him an England call-up and he made his Test debut against India before Christmas.

Wisden editor Lawrence Booth told BBC Radio Bristol: "Nick made an unanswerable case. He began the season very strongly and if it hadn't have rained at Worcester on 31 May he'd have become the first player since Graeme Hick in 1988 to score 1,000 first-class runs before the end of May.

"It's a lesson to everyone. People sometimes accuse the England team of being a closed shop and it's impossible to get in. But Compton has shown what is possible if you knuckle down.

"If the willingness and the consciousness remains he could be around for another five or six years."

Compton's grandfather Denis, who died in April 1997 aged 78, scored 17 Test hundreds and was also an FA Cup winner with Arsenal.

Amla, 30, impressed with the bat during the summer, becoming the first South African to score a Test triple century when he amassed 311 not out against England in 2012.

All-rounder Kallis, 37, made 182 at the Oval as a key member of the victorious touring side, while Steyn, 29, cemented his status as a world-class fast bowler, taking five wickets in that match as South Africa swept to an innings-and-12-run win.

Samuels, 32, was another tourist to catch the eye, excelling in the early English summer with scores of 31, 86, 117, 76 not out and 76 as West Indies lost the three-Test series 2-0.

Clarke, 32, is just the third Australian, after Ricky Ponting in 2003 and Shane Warne in 2004, to receive the leading cricketer accolade.

He began the year with the highest Test score ever recorded at the Sydney Cricket Ground, 329 out against India in January 2012, an innings only ended by his own declaration.

A double-century followed at Adelaide before, at the start of the 2012-13 season, he enjoyed back-to-back double tons against South Africa.

His 2012 Test aggregate of 1,595 placed him nearly 350 runs clear of his nearest rival, England skipper Alastair Cook.

The five cricketers of the year are chosen by the editor of Wisden, which this year marks its 150th anniversary.

Compton is not involved in Somerset's County Championship Division One opener at Durham that begins on Wednesday.


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