Sydney: Pakistan-born cricketer Fawad Ahmed has been named Australia's Muslim sportsperson of the year, beating code-hopping rugby league superstar Sonny Bill Williams.
Cricket Australia, which worked to have Ahmed's citizenship fast-tracked earlier this year, welcomed the announcement of the award, which acknowledges the spin bowler's contribution to Australia's Muslim community.
"It shows that Fawad has achieved outstanding things both on and away from the cricket pitch, and we are very proud of him," said Cricket Australia's James Sutherland.
Ahmed debuted for Australia this year in one-day internationals and Twenty20 games, and playing for Australia A in Africa in July and August led the wicket-taking in the three and four-day matches with 15 wickets in three matches at 22.66.
He beat Sydney Roosters National Rugby League player Williams and Australian Football League player Bachar Houli for the award.