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Gurinder Sandhu wins prestigious Steve Waugh medal

Sydney: Rookie fast bowler Gurinder Sandhu has made history by becoming the first Indian-origin player ever to win the prestigious Steve Waugh medal on Wednesday.

In what was a whirlwind six weeks to end the summer, Sandhu took 14 wickets in four Ryobi Cup games and 14 wickets in just two Sheffield Shield matches to clinch NSW`s top gong.

It was a remarkable effort by the giant right-arm quick, who only made his first-class debut at the start of this month.

NSW also failed to reach the finals in both the Sheffield Shield and one-day competition, while the Sixers and the winless Thunder did little in the Big Bash League and that was why the immediate success of Sandhu, a tall, 19-year-old pace-man of Indian descent who lives in Blacktown and also represented the Sydney Thunder, deserved to be celebrated at a gala night in the city.

Sandhu, an Australian under-19s representative, also featured in the Prime Minister`s XI match against the West Indies, and took four wickets in two Australia A games against England A.

The Steve Waugh Medal was decided by a 3-2-1 vote system, and Sandhu rocketed home to finish three points clear of wicketkeeper Brad Haddin and 13 ahead of fellow quick Trent Copeland.

Sandhu also won the Ryobi Cup player of the year, beating Steve Smith and Haddin, it concluded.