Kiwis drop to fourth despite win in Leeds


New Zealand slipped one place to fourth while England maintained their fifth position on the ICC Test Team Rankings following the conclusion of the Headingley Test, which the visitors won by 199 runs to square the two-Test series.

New Zealand had entered the series in third position on 99 points and would have plummeted to seventh if the second and final Test had been drawn or won by the home side.

However, the victory meant New Zealand fell behind India only by a fraction of a point, while England stayed ahead of sixth-ranked Pakistan, also by a fraction of a point.

Meanwhile, the West Indies and Australia go ahead to head in a two-Test series from Wednesday. Second-ranked Australia (108 points) lead eighth-ranked West Indies (84 points) by 24 points.

If Australia win the series 1-0, then they will gain one point, while the West Indies will concede one point. In case of a 2-0 victory, Australia will move to 111 points while the West Indies will drop to 81 points.

On the other side of the coin, if the West Indies win the series 1-0, then they will rise to 90 points and Australia will drop to 102 points while a 2-0 win will result in the home side jumping to 92 points with Australia sliding to 100 points.

In the rankings for Test Batsmen, New Zealand’s BJ Watling, who won the player of the match award, achieved a career-best ranking. His second-innings score of 120, his fourth career century, earned him eight places and puts him in 25th position in the latest rankings.

England captain Alastair Cook, who scored 75 and 56, moved up two places to 16th while New Zealand opener Tom Latham’s first innings contribution of 84 earned him six places and he moved to 41st position on the batting table.

Luke Ronchi returned in 62nd spot, Mark Craig vaulted 18 places to 69th and England opener Adam Lyth rocketed 85 places to 85th position.

In the rankings for Test Bowlers, Tim Southee gained two places to 10th position following figures of four for 83 and one for 43. Mark Craig was the biggest mover, rising 10 places to 38th spot following match figures of five for 121.

The good news for England was the rise of Mark Wood, who jumped 33 places to 66th, following match figures of five for 159. Stuart Broad moved up one place to seventh but James Anderson slipped one place to fourth.

Kumar Sangakkara of Sri Lanka leads the field in the batting rankings, with South Africa’s duo of AB de Villiers and Hashim Amla in second and third positions, respectively.

Dale Steyn is the number-one ranked bowler in the world, and he leads an absent Ryan Harris by 79 points.