Aussies get five lakh dollars for topping rankings

Published: Monday, April 10, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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Dubai:Australia's dominance of both forms of the game was rewarded today as the ICC gave away a cheque of 500,000 dollars to Ricky Ponting's World Champion team for being the top side for the second successive year in the Test as well ODI Championship table.

Australia collected the reward ahead of the first day's play in Dhaka after retaining a comfortable advantage in both official tables over the course of the 12 month period.

This is the second consecutive year in which Australia have benefited from their dominance of both the Test and ODI tables on the April 1 cut-off date.

ICC Chief Executive Malcolm Speed congratulated Cricket Australia on this achievement.

''The LG ICC Rankings have proved to be an excellent way of measuring the relative achievements of teams in both Test and ODI cricket and for the second year in a row Australia has come out on top,'' Mr Speed said in a statement here.

''There was a lot of focus on their Ashes defeat earlier in the year but it is interesting to note that the only two Test matches they lost in 12 months of cricket were by two runs and three wickets. They should be congratulated for once again proving to be the most consistent team in both forms of the game,'' he added.

Cricket Australia Chief Executive James Sutherland paid tribute to the performance saying, ''We are extremely proud of the players and support staff who have helped Australia to this position and look forward to the challenge of trying to make it three in a row in 2007.''

Australia's dominance of both Test and ODI cricket is marginally less convincing than it was 12 months ago - their Test ranking is one point lower than in 2005 and their ODI ranking has dropped eight points over the year - but they still retain a comfortable cushion in both LG ICC tables.

A record of nine wins, three draws and two defeats in Test cricket leaves Australia 18 points clear of its nearest rival England in the Test table. In ODI cricket the gap to second-placed South Africa is 13 points after Australia's record of 20 wins, one tie and 10 defeats in ODI cricket.

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