Graeme Smith: on top of the world...
After the satisfaction of seeing his team on top of the ODI rankings, Graeme Smith had a personal milestone to celebrate as well, as he went past Sachin Tendulkar to take the No. 1 spot in the ICC's ODI rankings for batsmen.
Smith began the three-match series against Bangladesh in third place, 24 points behind Tendulkar, but pushed him to second spot after scoring 199 and being dismissed just once in the three ODIs. In fact, Smith has been in glorious form in one-day internationals over the last seven months, scoring nine half-centuries and a hundred in his last 19 innings, for an average of 52.35.
Tendulkar's reign at the top thus lasted less than two weeks - he claimed the spot after leading India to victory in the CB Series - but Smith is likely to keep that spot for at least three months since both India and Australia aren't scheduled to play ODIs before June.
AB de Villiers was the other South African batsman who made significant progress, going up six places to a career-best No. 9 after being the second-highest run-getter in the series with 109 runs.
Among the bowlers, Andre Nel, who has been left out of the Test squad for the series against India, made the biggest improvement, going up ten places to No. 6 after claiming seven wickets in the series.
Bangladesh, though, had little to celebrate. Abdur Razzak moved up two spots to No. 16 in the bowlers' list, while Shakib Al Hasan broke into the top 50 for batting, but Mohammad Ashraful, their captain, dropped eight places to 59.
LG ICC Player Rankings
Rating Name Country Rank
1 G.C. Smith SA 792
2 S.R. Tendulkar IND 777
3 R.T. Ponting AUS 770
4 M. Yousuf PAK 752
5 M.L. Hayden AUS 740
6 A.C. Gilchrist AUS 738
7 M.E.K. Hussey AUS 736
8 K.P. Pietersen ENG 735
9 de Villiers SA 733
10 M.S. Dhoni IND 728
Saturday, March 15, 2008
Posted by Faizan Rasool at 3:18 PM