AB, Amla move up in Test rankings
The New Year’s Test between South Africa and England at Newlands saw batsmen from both nations move up in the latest ICC Test player rankings.
The England duo of Jonny Bairstow and Ben Stokes made impressive gains after both notched centuries.
Bairstow scored 150 not out, his maiden Test century, and 30 not out which have helped him vault 11 places to a career-high 32nd position. He is now England’s third highest-ranked batsman after Joe Root (fourth) and Alastair Cook (12th).
Stokes has also been rewarded for his career-best 258, which was followed by 26, with a jump of 15 places that has now put him in 38th position. He trails Bairstow by 32 points and six places.
Also heading in the right direction are South Africans AB de Villiers and Hashim Amla, who have gained one place each. De Villiers is now third and 18 points behind No-1 ranked Steve Smith, while Amla is seventh after scoring 201.
Outside the top 20, there were movements for Faf du Plessis to 29th (up by one place), Kraigg Brathwaite to 33rd (up by three places), Moeen Ali to 52nd (up by four places) and Denesh Ramdin to 58th (up by six places).
South Africa’s Temba Bavuma and the West Indies’ Carlos Brathwaite were the biggest movers in the latest updates.
Bavuma, who scored 102 not out, has rocketed 27 places to 82nd spot while Brathwaite has also jumped 27 places to 83rdafter scoring 69 in the rain-affected Sydney Test against Australia.
In the ICC player rankings for Test bowlers, Australia’s James Pattinson has continued to make upward movement. The fast bowler is now in 23rd position after gaining two places following figures of two for 76.
The bowlers’ list is headed by India off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin, with Dale Steyn second and Stuart Broad third. Steyn and Broad are separated by just five points.
Meanwhile, in the ICC Test Championship table, both Australia and West Indies have retained their pre-series rankings and points. Australia had started the series in third place on 109 points while the West Indies was eighth on 76 points.
The ICC Test Championship table will now be updated at the conclusion of South Africa-England series, while the Test player rankings will be updated after the Johannesburg Test, which starts on 14 January.