Massive rankings shake-up as new challenger emerges for No.1 Test batter

MRF Tyres ICC Rankings

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There's been a major shake-up at the top of the MRF Tyres ICC Men’s Test Batting Rankings following the latest update, while a new No.1 ranked ODI bowler has been crowned.

While Australia's Marnus Labuschagne holds on to the top spot for Test batters, his lead at the head of proceedings is narrowed following the completion of New Zealand's home series against Sri Lanka.

The Black Caps registered a comfortable innings and 58-run triumph in the second Test in Wellington to wrap up a 2-0 series sweep and it was former captain and veteran batter Kane Williamson that once again starred while collecting the Player of the Series award.

Williamson hit an unbeaten 121* to guide his side to a thrilling victory in the opening Test in Christchurch and then topped that effort with a brilliant 215 in the first innings of the second Test to put his side in a commanding position.

It was Williamson's sixth double century of his career and leaves former India captain Virat Kohli (seven) in his sights as the only current day player with more Test scores in excess of 200.

The consistent Kiwi has now been rewarded on the latest rankings update as Williamson rises to second on the list for Test batters.

Williamson improved a total of 51 rating points on the weekly update to have a total of 883 points and sit just 32 points behind Labuschagne in the lead as the 32-year-old looks to re-claim the No.1 ranking mantle he held after New Zealand’s triumph in the 2021 ICC World Test Championship final.

It means Steve Smith (third), Joe Root (fourth), Babar Azam (fifth) and Travis Head (sixth) all drop one place, while Sri Lanka skipper Dimuth Karunaratne (10th) takes the spot of India captain Rohit Sharma inside the top 10 after he scored three half-centuries in the series against New Zealand.

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There is also plenty of movement in the latest ODI Player Rankings, with a host of series either recently completed or ongoing ahead of the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup that is scheduled to be held later this year.

India pacer Mohammed Siraj copped the brunt of the attack by Mitchell Marsh and Travis Head during the second match of his side's ODI series with Australia and as a result has lost his place at the top of the rankings for ODI bowlers.

Australia seamer Josh Hazlewood - who is absent from the ongoing series in India - re-claims pole position ahead of New Zealand left-armer Trent Boult, with Siraj dropping into a tie for third with in-form quick Mitchell Starc.

West Indies pacer Alzarri Joseph jumps to a career-high rating and 11th place on the ODI bowling rankings following a strong series against South Africa, while teammate Akeal Hosein (up four spots to 20th) is another big mover.

Pakistan skipper Babar Azam maintains a healthy lead at the top of the ODI batting rankings, but there are a group of South Africa players who have made good ground on the prolific right-hander.

Heinrich Klaasen rises 13 spots to 30th after he hit a brilliant century in the Proteas' impressive victory over the West Indies in the third and final match of the series in Potchefstroom, while Temba Bavuma improves 17 places to 33rd following his big knock in the second game in East London.


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