A strong display in a losing cause from Keshav Maharaj has seen the Proteas spinner vault up to 18th on the ICC’s Test bowling rankings after the Test series in Sri Lanka.
Maharaj has been rewarded with a rise of five places following his match figures of 12 for 283, including nine for 129 in the first innings.
The Proteas left-arm tweaker’s tally of points (692) is the most for a South Africa spinner since Paul Harris reached 705 in December 2009.
Also making great gains in the series was Sri Lanka opener Dimuth Karunaratne.
Karunaratne scored 53 and 85, and also benefitted from Dinesh Chandimal’s absence as well as below-par performances from Dean Elgar and Aiden Markram to move up three places to a career-best seventh position. Karunaratne now leads Chandimal by 21 points, while he is ahead of ninth-ranked Elgar and 10th-ranked Markram by 30 and 51 points, respectively.
Karunaratne’s opening partner Danushka Gunathilaka, who also scored two half-centuries and was involved in opening partnerships of 116 and 91, has made an impressive gain of 36 places and now occupies 73rd position.
The biggest mover in the latest rankings is South Africa’s middle-order batsman Theunis de Bruyn. Although de Bruyn’s 101 failed to save his side from a 199-run defeat, his maiden Test century in his sixth Test has lifted the 25-year-old from 148th to 105th (up by 43 places).
The batting table is headed by Australia’s Steve Smith, although second-ranked Virat Kohli will be eyeing the number-one spot when he leads India in the five-Test series starting at Edgbaston next week. Kohli is presently 26 points behind Smith, but leads his third-ranked opposite number Joe Root by 48 points.
Maharaj was not the only slow bowler to improve his ranking. Sri Lanka off-spinners Dilruwan Perera and Akila Dananjaya have also made upward movements.
Perera, who had figures of four for 40 and two for 90, has jumped two places to 23rd, while Dananjaya has achieved a career-high ranking of 39th (up by 16 places) following figures of five for 52 and two for 67.
Rangana Herath, who took seven wickets in the match, including six for 98 in the second innings, has consolidated his eighth position by narrowing the gap with seventh-ranked Trent Boult to four points after collecting 26 points.
However, there was bad news for South Africa fast bowlers Kagiso Rabada and Dale Steyn.
After picking up just one wicket, Rabada has fallen from the number-one ranking, which means England’s most successful bowler, James Anderson, will start his country’s 1000th Test as the top-ranked bowler. Rabada had claimed the top-spot from Anderson following the Port Elizabeth Test against Australia earlier this year.
Rabada had entered the Colombo Test leading Anderson by seven points and now trails the Lancastrian by 10 points.
Likewise, Steyn remained wicketless in the Colombo Test. As a result, he has conceded 36 points and dropped five places in the latest rankings. Steyn is now ranked 24th on 635 points, which is his lowest points total since 544 in October 2007.
Meanwhile, Sri Lanka and South Africa have moved in opposite directions on the ICC Test Team Rankings following the home side’s 2-0 series win.
Second-ranked South Africa have joined Australia on 106 points after conceding six points, while sixth-ranked Sri Lanka have joined England on 97 points after collecting six points. However, South Africa is ranked above Australia and Sri Lanka is ranked below England, when the points are calculated beyond the decimal point.
South Africa’s dip means India will retain their No.1 ranking irrespective of how their five-Test series against England pans out, but England can rise to as high as second if they make a clean sweep of the series. The series starts at Edgbaston on 1 August.
ICC Test Team Rankings (as on 24 July, following the conclusion of Sri Lanka v South Africa Test):
|2||South Africa||106 (-6)|
|6||Sri Lanka||97 ( 6)|
(Developed by David Kendix)
ICC Player Rankings (as on 24 July, following the conclusion of Colombo Test):
BATSMEN (top 20)
|Rank||( /-)||Player||Team||Points||Avg||Highest rating|
|1||( – )||Steve Smith||Aus||929||61.37||947 v SA at Durban 2018|
|2||( – )||Virat Kohli||Ind||903||53.4||912 v SA at Johannesburg 2018|
|3||( – )||Joe Root||Eng||855||52.28||917 v Aus at Trent Bridge 2015|
|4||( – )||Kane Williamson||NZ||847||50.35||893 v Aus at Perth 2015|
|5||( – )||David Warner||Aus||820||48.2||880 v NZ at Perth 2015|
|6||( – )||C. Pujara||Ind||799||50.34||888 v SL at Nagpur 2017|
|7||( 3)||D. Karunaratne||SL||754!||37.28||754 v SA at Colombo (SSC) 2018|
|8||( 1)||D. Chandimal||SL||733||44.96||755 v Win at St Lucia 2018|
|9||(-1)||Dean Elgar||SA||724||41.05||784 v Aus at Johannesburg 2018|
|10||(-3)||Aiden Markram||SA||703*||47.27||759 v Aus at Johannesburg 2018|
|11||( – )||Ross Taylor||NZ||697||47.22||871 v Win at Hamilton 2013|
|12||( 1)||Kraigg Brathwaite||Win||695||37.94||701 v Eng at Headingley 2017|
|13||( 1)||Alastair Cook||Eng||686||45.65||874 v Ind at Kolkata 2012|
|14||(-3)||Hashim Amla||SA||673||47.23||907 v Pak at Abu Dhabi 2013|
|15||( – )||Azhar Ali||Pak||672||44.84||787 v Aus at Melbourne 2016|
|16||( – )||Jonny Bairstow||Eng||670||38.4||772 v SA at Old Trafford 2017|
|17||(-1)||Faf du Plessis||SA||665||42.33||734 v Ind at Centurion 2018|
|18||( – )||Lokesh Rahul||Ind||661*||40.86||761 v SL at Pallekele 2017|
|19||( 1)||Ajinkya Rahane||Ind||645||43.17||825 v NZ at Indore 2016|
|20||(-1)||Kusal Mendis||SL||641||36.78||693 v Win at St Lucia 2018|
BOWLERS (top 20)
|Rank||( /-)||Player||Team||Points||Avge||Highest Rating|
|1||( 1)||James Anderson||Eng||892||27.23||896 v Win at Lord’s 2017|
|2||(-1)||Kagiso Rabada||SA||882||21.71||902 v Aus at Port Elizabeth 2018|
|3||( – )||Ravindra Jadeja||Ind||866||23.11||899 v Aus at Ranchi 2017|
|4||( – )||Vernon Philander||SA||826||21.54||912 v Ind at Johannesburg 2013|
|5||( – )||R. Ashwin||Ind||811||25.34||904 v Eng at Mumbai 2016|
|6||( – )||Pat Cummins||Aus||800*!||23.81||800 v SA at Johannesburg 2018|
|7||( – )||Trent Boult||NZ||795||27.84||825 v Eng at Lord’s 2015|
|8||( – )||Rangana Herath||SL||791||27.95||867 v Zim at Harare 2016|
|9||(-1)||Neil Wagner||NZ||765||28.26||785 v Win at Wellington 2017|
|10||( – )||Josh Hazlewood||Aus||759||26.84||863 v Ind at Bengaluru 2017|
|11||( – )||Shannon Gabriel||Win||757!||29.57||757 v Ban at Jamaica 2018|
|12||( – )||Stuart Broad||Eng||742||28.89||880 v SA at Johannesburg 2016|
|13||( – )||Jason Holder||Win||731*!||29.35||731 v Ban at Jamaica 2018|
|14=||( – )||Tim Southee||NZ||720||30.82||799 v Win at Jamaica 2014|
|( – )||Mitchell Starc||Aus||720||28.17||805 v SA at Durban 2018|
|16||( – )||Nathan Lyon||Aus||710||32.21||774 v Eng at Adelaide 2017|
|17||( – )||M. Shami||Ind||696||28.9||703 v SA at Johannesburg 2018|
|18||( 5)||Keshav Maharaj||SA||692*||27.65||695 v Zim at Port Elizabeth 2017|
|19||(-1)||Yasir Shah||Pak||683||29.44||878 v Eng at Lord’s 2016|
|20||( – )||Kemar Roach||Win||667||28.31||774 v SA at Centurion 2014|
ALL-ROUNDERS (top five)
|Rank||( /-)||Player||Team||Points||Highest Rating|
|1||( – )||Shakib Al Hasan||Ban||420||489 v Aus at Mirpur 2017|
|2||( – )||Ravindra Jadeja||Ind||394||438 v SL at Colombo (SSC) 2017|
|3||( – )||Vernon Philander||SA||370||379 v SL at Galle 2018|
|4||( – )||R. Ashwin||Ind||365||493 v Eng at Mohali 2016|
|5||( – )||Jason Holder||Win||354 /*||355 v Ban at Jamaica 2018|
*indicates provisional rating; a batsman qualifies for a full rating after playing 40 Test innings; a bowler qualifies for a full rating when he reaches 100 Test wickets.
!indicates career-highest rating
The Lancastrian was fresh off some standout displays in the 2003 World Cup.
Hales lost his place in last year’s World Cup-winning squad after news of a second failed test for recreational drugs.
The Warwickshire all-rounder is one on 18 bowlers to be selected for personalised practice.
The West Indies are due to arrive on these shores first this summer.
Broad took part in an individual training session at Trent Bridge.
Clare Connor suggested England are considering hosting a Women’s Tri-Series also involving India and South Africa.
The designated bowlers, whose identitites have not been confirmed, will have their temperatures checked.
The ECB had planned to introduce 40 professional contracts this summer across eight regional hubs.
County are waiting on a decision.