ICC Men’s Rankings: Babar dethrones Kohli to become No 1 ODI batsman

Dubai, Apr 14 (UNI) Pakistan captain Babar Azam on Wednesday ended India captain Virat Kohli’s long reign at the top of the ICC Men’s ODI Player Rankings for batsmen and became only the fourth batsman from his country to attain number one position.

The 26-year-old’s player of the match effort of an 82-ball 94 in the last match of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Super League series against South Africa in Centurion helped him gain 13 rating points to reach 865 points. He now leads the Indian captain by eight points, the ICC said in a statement.

Babar, a star of the ICC Under-19 Men’s Cricket World Cups in 2010 and 2012 and who has been playing ODIs since 2015, had started the series against South Africa at 837 rating points but moved up to 858 (ahead of Kohli) after his score of 103 in the first match.

He dropped to 852 by the time of the last weekly rankings update with a score of 32 in the second ODI.

By ending Kohli’s 1,258 day-supremacy, Babar has emulated compatriots Zaheer Abbas (1983-84), Javed Miandad (1988-89), and Mohammad Yousuf (2003) as the number one ODI batsman.

In Tests, Babar has attained a best of fifth position and is currently ranked sixth while in T20Is he is third but has been number one in the past.

Left-handed opener Fakhar Zaman is another Pakistan batsman to move up the ODI batting charts, gaining five slots to reach a career-best seventh position after his knock of 101.

Meanwhile, left-arm fast bowler Shaheen Afridi (up four places to a career-best 11th place) and left-arm spinner Mohammad Nawaz (up 29 places to 96th) have progressed thanks to their three-wicket hauls in the match.

For South Africa, all-rounder Andile Phehlukwayo has gained 11 slots to reach 83rd position after notching a half-century while captain Temba Bavuma has progressed from 88th to 86th place.

In the ICC Men’s T20I Player Rankings, Mohammad Rizwan’s unbeaten 74 in the first match of their series against South Africa has helped him jump 24 places to 23rd position while Nawaz (up 36 places to 28), Hasan Ali (up 22 places to 62nd) and Usman Qadir (up 24 places to 68th) have moved up the bowlers’ list.

The T20I rankings update, carried out after the first two matches of the ongoing four-match series, also saw South Africa captain Heinrich Klaasen move up 38 places to 53rd position after scores of 56 and 36 not out while Aiden Markram has re-entered the rankings in 65th position after his two half-centuries.

Beuran Hendricks has progressed 44 places to 46th after a three-wicket haul in the first match.

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