DUBAI: Babar Azam, captain of Pakistan team on Wednesday reclaimed the top slot in ICC’s T20I Batting Ranking after a superb performance during the Pakistan vs Namibia match in the T20 World Cup.
Azam’s two successive half-centuries in the ongoing ICC tournament (and three in four matches) have helped him overtake England’s Dawid Malan and grab the No. 1 position for batters.
Babar, who recently scored 51 against Afghanistan and 70 against Namibia to lead the 2009 champions into the semifinals, is at the top of the ranking for the sixth time in his career.
The 27-year-old had first attained the top position on January 28, 2018. He is presently also ranked No. 1 in ODIs.
Babar’s tally of 834 rating points puts him 36 points ahead of Dawid Malan, but his career best remains 896 rating points — achieved after scoring 65 against England at Cardiff on May 5, 2019.
Muhammad Rizwan Toppled Virat Kohli
On the other hand, Pakistan wicket-keeper-batsman Mohammad Rizwan toppled Indian skipper Virat Kohli in ICC Men’s T20I Player Rankings.
Rizwan’s tally of 731 rating points keeps him 17 points ahead of Kohli at the fourth number.
Pakistan’s star players Babar Azam and Rizwan have secured their position in the first five spots following their exceptional performances during the ongoing T20 World Cup.
Babar Azam is the new No.1 batter on the @MRFWorldwide ICC Men’s T20I rankings, while Wanindu Hasaranga has claimed top spot on the bowling rankings for the first time #T20WorldCup pic.twitter.com/zoCVVJIPze— ICC (@ICC) November 3, 2021
Malan has been at the top of the ICC ranking since November 29 last year.
England’s brilliant performances in the tournament too reflect in the rankings, with openers Jos Buttler and Jason Roy moving up in the latest weekly update.
Buttler has gained eight slots to reach a career-best ninth position after smashing a maiden T20I hundred against Sri Lanka, while Roy is up five places to 14th place.
Meanwhile, Sri Lankan leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga has topped the bowling charts for the first time in his career after two successive three-wicket hauls against South Africa and England. He replaces South Africa’s Tabraiz Shamsi, who was at the top since 10 April this year.
The top four bowlers in the rankings are all wrist spinners, with England’s Adil Rashid overtaking Afghanistan’s Rashid Khan to take third place with a career-best 730 rating points. A fast bowler who has made rapid gains is South Africa’s Anrich Nortje, who has gained 18 slots to reach seventh position.
At the top of the all-rounders’ table, Mohammad Nabi has caught up with Shakib Al Hasan with 271 rating points. Hasaranga is fourth on this list.