McCullum among Wisden's five Cricketers of the Year


Former New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum, England all-rounder Ben Stokes and Australia skipper Steve Smith are among Wisden's five Cricketers of the Year.

McCullum has been given the prestigious honour less than two months after calling time on his illustrious international career.

The ex-Black Caps skipper ended his Test career in spectacular fashion, smashing the fastest-ever Test century against Australia in Christchurch - where he reached three figures in only 54 balls.

McCullum played 101 Tests, 260 one-day internationals and 71 Twenty20 matches for his country and was a dynamic leader for New Zealand.

Stokes has also been recognised by Wisden in a month when he was crestfallen after being dispatched for four sixes in as many balls by Carlos Brathwaite in a dramatic final over which saw West Indies crowned World Twenty20 champions.

The powerful batsman and fast-medium bowler has emerged as a key player for England in all formats, scoring the fastest Test double century against South Africa in January.

Stokes also made the quickest ton at Lord's in the longest format against New Zealand last year and has also starred with the ball.

Australia captain Smith tops the ICC Test rankings, averaging 57.56 with 14 centuries in only 41 matches and also making telling contributions in one-day cricket.

New Zealand captain Kane Williamson is recognised by Wisden after establishing himself as one of the best batsmen in world cricket.

England wicketkeeper-batsman Jonny Bairstow also makes the list, having forced his way back into the Test side and scored his first international century during the series win in South Africa.