Prime News, International and National Sport, Cricket, New Delhi, August 14:- Barely a week after bagging the top spot in the ICC Test batsmen rankings, Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli’s stay at the top was cut short as he conceded the No 1 ranking to Australia’s Steve Smith.
Kohli, who is now at the second position, failed to lift his team out of the tough situation at the Lord’s Test against England and could only muster knocks of 23 and 17 as India succumbed for 107 and 130, ultimately crashing to an innings and 159 runs defeat against England and trailing 0-2 in the series.
All-rounder Ravichandran Ashwin was the notable exception, moving up in the list for batsmen from 67th to 57th. All-rounder Hardik Pandya has moved up 25 places to take the 74th spot among the bowlers.
Meanwhile, England pacer James Anderson became the seventh bowler from England and the first in 38 years from his country to breach the 900-point mark in the MRF Tyres ICC Test Player Rankings following an excellent performance in the second Test against India at Lord’s.
Anderson’s outstanding match figures of nine for 43 have enabled him to reach 903 points and join a select group comprising Sydney Barnes (932), George Lohmann (931), Tony Lock (912), Ian Botham (911), Derek Underwood (907) and Alec Bedser (903), all of whom peaked at over 900 points during their careers.
Anderson, England’s all-time leading wicket-taker in Tests with 553 scalps and the only one to claim 100 Test wickets at Lord’s, is the first England bowler to reach the coveted mark since Botham touched 900 points in August 1980. Anderson now leads second-placed South African fast bowler Kagiso Rabada by 21 points in the bowlers’ list.
Another one to make a mark in the Lord’s Test is Chris Woakes, whose splendid century and useful bowling efforts saw him move up all three charts – for batsmen, bowlers and all-rounders. Woakes, who slammed an unbeaten 137 in England’s only innings and chipped in with four wickets in the match, has gained 34 places to reach a career-best 50th position among batsmen while also moving up three places to 32nd among bowlers and by five places to seventh among all-rounders.
Another English player to catch the eye in the latest rankings is wicketkeeper-batsman Jonny Bairstow, whose 93-run knock lifted him back to the top 10, in ninth place. Stuart Broad (up one place to 12th) among bowlers, and batsmen Jos Buttler (up one place to 69th) and Ollie Pope (125th), have also done well with regard to rankings.
The Kohli-led side will now have to win the third Test, beginning August 18 at the Trent Bridge, if they want to keep themselves alive in the series. (Inputs: Agencies, NGB)