India risk losing second spot in Tests rankingsApril 7th, 2008 - 10:08 pm ICT by admin
Dubai, April 7 (IANS) A tough task awaits India ahead of the third and final Test against South Africa at Kanpur starting Friday as only a win can save them from a series loss at home. Thery are also in the danger of losing the second position in the ICC Test Championship table. A draw or a loss at Kanpur will drop India two full places to the fourth position.
However, there was some positive news for India in the ICC rankings as, by virtue of their good show in the ongoing series, Irfan Pathan and spinner Harbhajan Singh have moved up to the top five and top 20 in the Test all-rounder and Test bowlers rankings issued Monday.
Pathan occupies the fifth position in the all-rounders’ ranking, while Harbhajan has overtaken South African Jacques Kallis, Pakistani pacer Umar Gul and Kiwi skipper Daniel Vettori to move up four places to the 20th position in the bowlers’ ranking.
Indian Test skipper Anil Kumble is the only Indian to feature in top 10 bowlers chart, occupying the sixth position.
In the batsman category, master blaster Sachin Tendulkar is the highest ranked Indian at the 12th position, followed by Chennai Test triple centurion Virender Sehwag in the 13th spot. Former captain Rahul Dravid (15th position) and V.V.S. Laxman (19) are the other two Indian batsmen in the top 20.
Meanwhile, by virtue of his fiery bowling display in Ahmedabad Test, scalping eight wickets to help South Africa demolish India by an innings and 90 runs, pacer Dale Steyn has moved to the top of the ICC Test bowlers’ ranking.
Steyn, who has taken just 22 matches to reach the top of the table, shares the number one spot with Sri Lankan spin wizard Muttiah Muralitharan.
With one more Test left in the current series against India, the South African pacer has an opportunity to go atop the table on his own and become just the 20th bowler in the history of Test cricket to pass the magic 900-point mark in the ratings.
However, the news is not so good for Sri Lankan wicket-keeper batsman Kumar Sangakkara, who has slipped from the top of the ICC Test batsmen ranking after a relatively disappointing two-Test series in the West Indies.
Australia’s Michael Hussey has taken his place at the top, and Sangakkara now finds himself at the fourth position behind Australian skipper Ricky Ponting and Jacques Kallis of South Africa.
ICC Test Rankings (as of April 7):
1. Mike Hussey (Australia)
2. Ricky Ponting (Australia) and , Jacques Kallis (South Africa)
4. Kumar Sangakkara (Sri Lanka)
5. Md. Yousuf (Pakiatan)
6. Matthew Hayden (Australia)
7. Shivnaraine Chanderpaul (West Indies), Mahela Jayawardena (Sri Lanka)
9. Younis Khan (Pakiatan)
10.Kevin Pietersen (England)
1. Muttiah Muralidaran (Sri Lanka), Dale Steyn (South Africa)
3. Stuart Clark (Australia)
4. Brett Lee (Australia)
5. Makhaya Ntini (South Africa)
6. Anil Kumble (India)
7. Chaminda Vaas (Sri Lanka)
8. Shane Bond (New Zealand)
9. Shoaib Akhtar (Pakiatan)
10.Ryan Sidebottom (England)
1. Jacques Kallis (South Africa)
2. Daniel Vettori (New Zealand)
3. Andrew Flintoff (England)
4. Chaminda Vaas (Sri Lanka)
5. Irfan Pathan (India)
Tags: Anil Kumble, bowlers, dale steyn, eight wickets, fifth position, harbhajan singh, indian batsmen, indian test, kanpur, master blaster, muttiah muralitharan, pathan, positive news, sixth position, sri lank, test championship, test cricket, thery, v v s laxman, virender sehwag