Australia captain Ricky Ponting has dropped out of the world's top 20 batsmen for the frist time in 9 years following his failed couple of innings in the recently-concluded second test at Adelaide. The falling statistic comes on the heels of Australia's crushing innings-and-71-run loss in that match. Meanwhile, the man that dismissed Ponting for a duck in the first innings, James Anderson, rises to a career-best No. 3 in the bowling chart, while his spinner team-mate Graeme Swann moves right behind South Africa's Dale Steyn at No. 1.
Ponting didn't get past the opening over at Adelaide, when he was snapped up at slip first ball, and could only come up with 9 runs in the second innings before being sent back by Graeme Swann. That left him with a total of just 70 runs in four innings for the series.
Anderson stole a march on Indian speedster Zaheer Khan to snatch the third spot following his match figures of 6 for 143. He began the match in stellar fashion, removing Ponting and Michael Clarke as Australia slumped to 3 for 2 and then, on the final morning, found himself on a hat-trick after scalping Brad Haddin and Ryan Harris.
Swann, meanwhile was able to right the wrongs of his first match in the Ashes, playing a crucial role in England's win at Adelaide. He only took two wickets in the first innings, but came in for a fortune in the second, by finishing with a five-wicket haul. The off-break is just 14 points behind Dale Steyn and could close up the gap if he prospers at Perth and Melbourne. Steyn however, also has a chance to stay on top as he leads the South African attack against India this month.
England also scaled up greater heights in terms of its batting, with Jonathan Trott moving to 6th place, while Cook's outrageous form has catapulted him to No. 13. Kevin Pietesen too has stomped up the ladder on the back of his match-winning 227 at Adelaide.