Thursday, December 25, 2008
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (CMC) – West Indies batting marvel, Shivnarine Chanderpaul has tightened his grip on cricket’s No 1 spot in the world batting rankings after attaining his highest ever points rating.
Chanderpaul earned a 900-point ratings mark – only the 25th batsman in Test cricket history to achieve that – with his century in the second Test against New Zealand, and holds firm at No 1 in the latest Reliance Mobile ICC Test Player Rankings released yesterday.
The rankings also show his teammates Chris Gayle, up to 20th in the batting, and Fidel Edwards, No 22 in bowling, achieving their highest ever positions in those categories.
The 34-year-old Chanderpaul, who won the ICC Cricketer of the Year 2008 award at the LG ICC Awards in Dubai, scored 126 not out in the first innings against New Zealand in the Napier Test which ended in a draw on Tuesday.
The Guyanese left-hander attained the No 1 spot for the first time in July this year and his closest rivals on the list are Sri Lanka’s Kumar Sangakkara at No 2 and Pakistan’s Mohammed Yousuf at three.
Sri Lanka’s Mahela Jayawardene climbs one place to fourth and England’s Kevin Pietersen is up to No 5 after a three place jump.
The batting Top-10 is completed by Australian Mike Hussey, Younis Khan, of Pakistan, South African Graeme Smith, Australian Ricky Ponting at ninth and India’s opening batsman Gautam Gambhir 10th.
Gambhir surged into the Top-10 for the first time in his career after stellar performances of 179 and 97 against England in Mohali.
Gayle climbed seven places to 20th after an impressive 197 in the second innings at Napier.
Ramnaresh Sarwan, at 26th, is the only other West Indies player in the batting Top-30.
There are no West Indians in the bowling Top-10 with Jerome Taylor the best at No 17.
Edwards, with an all-time best rating of 22nd, is the only other Caribbean bowler in the Top-30.
During the drawn Napier Test, Edwards attained 100 wickets in Tests and picked up a career-best seven for 87.
Australia’s left-arm pacer Mitchell Johnson has broken into the top five for the first time after his man-of-the-match performance in the Perth Test.
With match-figures of 11 for 159 last weekend, he is now up to No 5.
Sri Lanka’s Muttiah Muralitharan is still No 1, stalked by the South African pacers Dale Steyn and Makhaya Ntini, with Australian Stuart Clark at No 4.
There is no change in the top five in the all-rounders’ ranking as South Africa’s Jacques Kallis enjoys a commanding lead over New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori, followed by Andrew Flintoff (England), West Indian Dwayne Bravo, and Chaminda Vaas (Sri Lanka) with Gayle at No 6.
RELIANCE MOBILE ICC TEST RANKINGS (AS OF 24 DECEMBER)
1 Shiv Chanderpaul (WI)
2 Kumar Sangakkara (SL)
3 Mohammed Yousuf (PAK)
4 Mahela Jayawardene (SL)
5 Kevin Pietersen (ENG)
6 Mike Hussey (AUS)
7 Younis Khan (PAK)
8 Graeme Smith (SA)
9 Ricky Ponting (AUS)
10 Gautam Gambhir (IND)
20th Chris Gayle (WI)
26th Ramnaresh Sarwan (WI)
1 Muttiah Muralitharan (SL)
2 Dale Steyn (SA)
3 Makhaya Ntini (SA)
4 Stuart Clark (AUS)
5 Mitchell Johnson (AUS)
6 Ryan Sidebottom (ENG)
7 Brett Lee (AUS)
8 Harbhajan Singh (IND)
9 Chaminda Vaas (SL)
9 Shoaib Akhtar (PAK)
17th Jerome Taylor (WI)
22nd Fidel Edwards (WI)
1 Jacques Kallis (SA)
2 Daniel Vettori (NZ)
3 Andrew Flintoff (ENG)
4 Dwayne Bravo (WI)
5 Chaminda Vaas (SL)
6th Chris Gayle (WI)
Source: Jamaica Observer