Test Rankings: Sanga reclaims top batting spot

Published: Monday, December 31, 2007, 3:35 [IST]
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Dubai: Sri Lanka's Kumar Sangakkara regained top spot in the ICC player rankings for Test batsmen after Australia captain Ricky Ponting and South African Jaques Kallis suffered rare batting failures against India and West Indies respectively in the recently concluded Boxing Day Tests.

Ponting was leading the ICC chart at the start of first Test ahead of second placed Kallis and Sangakkara by one and three rating points respectively.

But he could score only five and three runs in two innings conceding 19-rating points and fell behind the two on 917 points.

Kallis, who could not get off the mark in the first innings, did try to compensate by scoring 85 in his second dig that was just enough to retain his second spot at 923 rating points.

Sangakkara, on 933 points, had earlier knocked Ponting off the top spot after his performance of 92 and 152 in the first Test against England in Kandy earlier this month.

Sri Lanka now has players at the top of both the batsman and bowler categories in the ICC Player Rankings as world record-breaking spinner Muttiah Muralitharan tops the bowling list.

Meanwhile, Australia's Stuart Clark replaced Ntini in second spot while South African Dale Steyn dropped three positions to allow Kumble and Lee to rise in the bowling list.

For India, Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly climbed one place each and now have South Africa's Ashwell Prince and Australia's Adam Gilchrist firmly in their sights. Only five ratings point separate 15th placed Prince from 18th place Ganguly.

Former captain Rahul Dravid dropped two places to 14th following his dismal performance in the first Test while Hussey edged closer to the 900-mark.

Matthew Hayden was also rewarded for his effort of 124 and 47 when he jumped two places ahead of Sri Lanka's Mahela Jaywardena and England's Kevin Pietersen in sixth position.

Chris Gayle, Daren Ganga, Marlon Samuels and de Villiers moved up the ladder.

While Michael Clarke cemented his place in 11th spot following knocks of 20 and 73, Phil Jaques and Andrew Symonds made movements in the right direction. Phil Jaques, who scored 66 and 51, jumped 12 places to 25th position while Symonds climbed eight places to 32nd spot.

India captain Anil Kumble and Brett Lee of Australia gained one place each. Kumble"s match effort of 7-186 puts him in fourth place while Lee"s 6-89 places him in fifth position, just two points behind the Indian wrist spinner.

Clark"s effort of 5-48 in the Test helped him jump two places and placed him 27 points ahead of Ntini who managed 4-135 in the match and consequently conceded 13 ratings points.

Kallis leads the ICC Player Rankings for Test all-rounders.

Chris Gayle leapfrogged India"s Irfan Pathan in sixth place.

However, the West Indies captain is still 29 points behind fifth-placed Chaminda Vaas of Sri Lanka.

ICC Rankings (Tests):

Batsmen: 1) Kumara Sangakkara (SL, 933); 2) Jacques Kallis (SA, 923); 3) Ricky Ponting (Aus, 917); 4) Mike Hussey (Aus, 882); 5) Mohd Yousuf (Pak, 880); 6) Matthew Hayden (Aus, 847); 7) Mahela Jayawardena (SL, 835); 8) Kevin Pietersen (Eng, 804); 9) Younus Khan (Pak, 799) and 10) Shivnarine Chanderpaul (WI, 790).

Bowlers: 1) Muttiah Muralitharan (SL, 907); 2) Stuart Clark (Aus, 822); 3) Makhaya Ntini (SA, 795); 4) Anil Kumble (Ind, 754); 5) Brett Lee (Aus, 752); 6) Dale Steyn (SA, 749); 7) Shane Bond (NZ) 724); 8) Matthew Hoggard (Eng, 695); 9) Shaun Pollock (SA, 694) and 10) Shoaib Akhtar (Pak, 684).

All-rounders: 1) Jacques Kallis (SA, 537); 2) Andrew Flintoff (Eng, 340); 3) Shaun Pollock (SA, 322); 4) Daniel Vettori (NZ, 316) and 5) Chaminda Vaas (SL, 276).


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