The ICC has named the Pakistan batter Fakhar Zaman as the ‘ Men’s Player of the month’ for April 2023. Meanwhile, Naruemol Chaiwai of Thailand won the ICC Women's Player of the Month award. The ‘player of the month’ is an initiative undertaken by the ICC to connect with fans of the sport and celebrate performances of their favourite players through the year.
The award has been in contention since January 2021 and has since been awarded each month to one female cricketer and one female cricketer every month ever since. India’s star wicket keeper batsman Rishabh Pant was the first recipient of the award in January 2021.
Fakhar Zaman beat the other nominees who were Sri Lanka’s Prabath Jayasuriya and Kiwi Mark Chapman to get his hands on the prestigious award. The southpaw featured in four T20Is and two ODIs against New Zealand in the month of April. He was in exceptional touch in the ODIs as he scored fabulous match winning centuries in both the games. He scored 117(114) in the first ODI and barely missed out on a double century in the second ODI as he scored 180(144).
In a high-scoring match, Pakistan chased down a big total of 337 and triumphed with 10 balls remaining owing to Fakhar's knock, which featured 17 boundaries and six towering sixes. He was the player of the match in both of those fixtures and was also named as the player of the series. This scintillating performance was enough for the southpaw to get the award to his name.
For the month of April 2023, Naruemol Chaiwai won the ICC Women's Player of the Month award, besting rivals Kelis Ndhlovu of Zimbabwe and Kavisha Egodage of the United Arab Emirates. In the 3-0 series victory against Zimbabwe, the right-hander scored two unbeaten half-centuries. The first came when he saved Thailand from a hazardous position of 21/4 by finishing 57* as the hosts crumbled to a meagre score of 154 all out.
Thailand was able to win by 78 runs as Zimbabwe's batting order was only able to muster 76 runs in response. For her performances, Chaiwai earned the title of Player of the Series. She scored 55 runs in the three T20Is. Her score of 29 in the second T20I aided the team's five-wicket victory.