Virat Kohli loses top spot in ICC Test rankings
Christchurch, Feb. 26 (IANS): India captain Virat Kohli has lost his numero uno spot in the ICC Test rankings after managing only 21 runs in his two innings in the first Test against New Zealand in Wellington, which his side lost by 10 wickets to concede a 1-0 lead in the two-match series. He has been replaced by Australia’s Steve Smith.
This is the eighth time that Smith is on top of the rankings after first occupying the top position in June 2015. The last batsman apart from Smith and Kohli to be No. 1 was New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson, for an eight-day period in December 2015.
In the latest update, that also includes the one-off Test between Bangladesh and Zimbabwe in Mirpur — which the home side won by an innings and 106 runs — Williamson has gained 31 points after his innings of 89 due to the low team scores in the match and the highly-rated India attack, facts considered in the calculation of rating points.
India opener Mayank Agarwal is back at a career-best 10th position with his highest aggregate points tally. Bangladesh’s Mushfiqur Rahim has risen five places to return to the top 20 after his double-century while captain Mominul Haque has moved up five places to 39th after a score of 132.
New Zealand’s Ross Taylor and Colin de Grandhomme have moved up the batsmen’s list while fast bowlers Tim Southee and Trent Boult have made big gains after finishing with nine and five wickets, respectively.
Southee has advanced eight spots to take sixth position, which is his highest since a career-best fifth place in June 2014. Boult has moved up four slots to take joint-13th position.
Nayeem Hasan is the big news for the team with his nine wickets lifting him 29 places to 38th position among bowlers. Abu Jayed has moved up 11 places to 46th.
Craig Ervine top-scored in both innings for Zimbabwe to progress by 15 places. He is one place behind his best of 41st achieved in July 2017.
In the World Test Championship, New Zealand are on 120 points after gaining 60 points for the Wellington victory. They had won 60 points in a 1-1 draw against Sri Lanka while this is the first match that top-placed India have lost.
India and New Zealand will now face each other in the second Test beginning Saturday at Christchurch’s Hagley Oval.