Jadeja zips ahead of Ashwin to grab sole top spot in Test bowlers’ rankings; Pujara rises to career-high second place

Ravindra Jadeja Cheteshwar PujaraRavindra Jadeja has whizzed ahead of India spin-twin Ravichandran Ashwin to take the sole top spot in the MRF Tyres ICC Player Rankings for Test Bowlers after grabbing nine wickets in the drawn third Test against Australia which puts the four-match series interestingly poised at 1-1.


Jadeja, who grabbed five for 124 and four for 52 in in Ranchi, has gained seven points after starting joint-first with Ashwin at 892 points. The left-arm spinner has become only the third India player after Ashwin and Bishan Bedi to top the bowling charts on his own.



Jadeja has also closed in on a major landmark as his tally of 899 rating points puts him on the brink of becoming only the second India bowler after Ashwin to touch the 900-point mark. Ashwin, who had a highest rating of 904 points, has slipped 37 points behind Jadeja to 862 points after finishing with two wickets in Ranchi.

The latest rankings, which also take into account the Colombo Test which Bangladesh won by four wickets against Sri Lanka to draw the series 1-1 and the second Test in Wellington which South Africa won by eight wickets to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series against New Zealand, also sees quite a few other significant changes.

South Africa spinner Keshav Maharaj has risen 15 places to reach a career-best 37th spot after taking eight wickets in Wellington while pace bowlers Umesh Yadav of India (26th) and Mustafizur Rahman of Bangladesh (47th) have also achieved personal best rankings.

In the MRF Tyres ICC Player Rankings for Test Batsmen, top-ranked Steve Smith has reached a career-high rating of 941 points after scores of 178 not out and 21. The Australia captain's tally is the joint-fifth highest ever along with Peter May. Only Don Bradman (961), Len Hutton (945), Jack Hobbs and Ricky Ponting (942) have achieved higher rating points.

India’s Cheteshwar Pujara too has reason to celebrate as his knock of 202 has helped gain four slots to reach a career-best second ranking. He has replaced New Zealand captain Kane Williamson, who is now in fifth place, also slipping behind Joe Root and Virat Kohli.

The Bangladesh pair of Shakib Al Hasan (21st) and Mushfiqur Rahim (28th), Australia’s Peter Handscomb (35th) and New Zealand batsmen Jeet Raval (43rd) and Henry Nicholls (45th) have also achieved career-best rankings.

Shakib, who took six wickets in Colombo, has displaced Ashwin from the top rank in the list of all-rounders after the two players inter-changed positions two times last week.

Meanwhile, the race for the second spot in the MRF Tyres ICC Test Team Rankings has become interesting as Australia and South Africa compete ahead of the cut-off date of 1 April, on which India is assured of finishing first and a cash award of $1 million.

Australia will finish second and get a cash award $ 500,000 with at least a draw in the last Test in Dharamsala while South Africa can finish second if Australia loses and South Africa either wins or draws the last match against New Zealand in Hamilton.

The third-placed team on 1 April will receive $ 200,000 while the fourth-placed team, which will be England, will get $ 100,000.

The Test team rankings, unlike the ODI and T20I rankings, are updated after the end of a series. The ICC Test predictor function is available here.

MRF Tyres ICC Test Player Rankings (as on 21 March, after the third Test between India and Australia in Ranchi, second Test between Sri Lanka and Bangladesh in Colombo and second Test between New Zealand and South Africa in Wellington)

Batsmen (top 20)

Rank    (+/-)      Player             Team     Pts       Avge   Highest Rating

   1       ( - )       Steve Smith      Aus      941!     60.98   941 v Ind at Ranchi 2017

   2       (+4)      C. Pujara          Ind       861!     51.95   861 v Aus at Ranchi 2017

   3       ( - )       Joe Root           Eng      848      52.80   917 v Aus at Trent Bridge 2015

   4       ( - )       Virat Kohli         Ind       826      49.41   895 v Ban at Hyderabad 2017

   5       (-3)       K. Williamson    NZ        823      49.89   893 v Aus at Perth 2015

   6       (+1)      Azhar Ali           Pak      779      47.07   787 v Aus at Melbourne 2016

   7       (+1)      Younus Khan    Pak      772      53.06   880 v SL at Lahore 2009

   8       (-3)       David Warner    Aus      768      47.71   880 v NZ at Perth 2015

   9       ( - )       Hashim Amla    SA        759      49.57   907 v Pak at Abu Dhabi 2013

  10      (+7)      Q. de Kock       SA        758*    49.12   769 v SL at Cape Town 2017

  11      (-1)       AB de Villiers     SA        740       50.46   935 v Aus at Port Elizabeth 2014

  12      (+1)      Jonny Bairstow  Eng      731       41.27   759 v Ind at Mohali 2016

  13      (-1)       U. Khawaja       Aus      725      47.94   747 v Pak at Sydney 2017

  14      ( - )       Alastair Cook    Eng      720      46.45   874 v Ind at Kolkata 2012

  15      ( - )       Ross Taylor      NZ        712      47.10   871 v WI at Hamilton 2013

  16      (-5)       Dean Elgar        SA        708      40.65   740 v NZ at Dunedin 2017

  17      (-2)       A. Rahane        Ind       704      45.38   825 v NZ at Indore 2016

  18      ( - )       A. Mathews       SL        688      46.08   877 v NZ at Christchurch 2014

  19      ( - )       Faf du Plessis   SA        678      44.49   710 v WI at Port Elizabeth 2014

  20      (+1)      K. Brathwaite    WI        677!     37.52   677 v Pak at Sharjah 2016

Other selected rankings

Rank    (+/-)      Player             Team     Pts       Avge   Highest Rating

 21       (+5)      S. Al Hasan       Ban      676!     40.92   676 v SL at Colombo (PSS) 2017

24       (+9)      Tamim Iqbal      Ban      654      39.53   707 v Eng at Old Trafford 2010

28       (+1)      M. Rahim          Ban      644!     35.48   644 v SL at Colombo (PSS) 2017

29       (+5)      D. Chandimal    SL        638      42.33   692 v Aus at Colombo (SSC) 2016

31       (+4)      Murali Vijay       Ind       630      40.34   747 v SA at Bengaluru 2015

35       (+6)      P. Handscomb  Aus      609*!   63.44   609 v Ind at Ranchi 2017

43       (+26)    Jeet Raval        NZ        545*!   40.50   545 v SA at Wellington 2017

45       (+16)    Henry Nicholls   NZ        536*!   33.72   536 v SA at Wellington 2017

46       (+11)    T. Bavuma        SA        524*    32.76   563 v Aus at Hobart 2016

51       (+14)    W. Saha           Ind       498*!   32.73   498 v Aus at Ranchi 2017

Bowlers (top 20)

Rank    (+/-)      Player              Team    Pts      Avge    Highest Rating

   1       ( - )       R. Jadeja          Ind       899!     23.21   899 v Aus at Ranchi 2017

   2       (-1)       R. Ashwin         Ind       862       25.29   904 v Eng at Mumbai 2016

   3       (+1)      R. Herath          SL        854       27.87   867 v Zim at Harare 2016

   4       (-1)       J. Hazlewood    Aus      842       25.05   863 v Ind at Bengaluru 2017

   5       (+2)      J. Anderson      Eng      810       28.50   884 v SL at Durham 2016

   6=     (+2)      Stuart Broad     Eng      803       28.54   880 v SA at Johannesburg 2016

           ( - )       Dale Steyn        SA        803       22.30   909 v WI at Centurion 2014

   8       (-3)       Kagiso Rabada  SA        802*    23.28   821 v SL at Johannesburg 2017

   9       ( - )       V. Philander      SA        767       21.90   912 v Ind at Johannesburg 2013

  10      ( - )       Neil Wagner      NZ        762       28.64   767 v SA at Dunedin 2017

  11      ( - )       Mitchell Starc    Aus      749       28.35   805 v Pak at Brisbane 2016

  12      ( - )       Trent Boult        NZ        740       28.75   825 v Eng at Lord's 2015

  13      ( - )       Tim Southee     NZ        694       31.55   799 v WI at Jamaica 2014

  14      (+1)      Morne Morkel    SA        675       29.28   776 v Aus at Cape Town 2011

  15      (-1)       Dilruwan Perera SL        652*    28.58   674 v Zim at Harare 2016

  16      (+1)      Yasir Shah        Pak      649       31.51   878 v Eng at Lord's 2016

  17      (+1)      S. Al Hasan       Ban      638      33.02   700 v Zim at Khulna 2014

  18      (-2)       Nathan Lyon     Aus      623      33.62   696 v NZ at Wellington 2016

  19      ( - )       Wahab Riaz      Pak      579*!   34.01   579 v Aus at Sydney 2017

  20      ( - )       Ben Stokes       Eng      576*    34.46   589 v Ind at Mohali 2016

Other selected rankings

Rank    (+/-)      Player             Team     Pts       Avge   Highest Rating

 26       (+3)      Umesh Yadav   Ind       526*!   36.92   526 v Aus at Ranchi 2017

37       (+15)    K. Maharaj        SA        464*!   23.12   464 v NZ at Wellington 2017

47       (+20)    M. Rahman       Ban      360*!   23.16   360 v SL at Colombo (PSS) 2017

All-rounders (top five)

Rank    (+/-)      Player             Team     Pts      Highest Rating

   1       (+1)      S. Al Hasan       Ban      431     443 v NZ at Christchurch 2017

   2       (-1)       R. Ashwin         Ind       408     493 v Eng at Mohali 2016

   3       ( - )       R. Jadeja          Ind       387     407 v Ban at Hyderabad 2017

   4       (+1)      Ben Stokes       Eng      327 /*  351 v Ind at Mohali 2016

   5       (-1)       Mitchell Starc    Aus      325     347 v Ind at Pune 2017



Batsmen (top 20)