ICC Test Rankings: Steve Smith Overtakes Kane Williamson to Become No.1 Batsman

ICC Test Rankings: Steve Smith Overtakes Kane Williamson to Become No.1 Batsman Australia Batsman Steve Smith (Photo Credit: Steve Smith IG)

New Delhi: Australia cricketer Steve Smith has made his way to the No.1 position in the latest ICC Men’s Test Player Rankings for the very first time since the Boxing Day Tests last year.

According to Wednesday’s official release from ICC, Smith overtakes New Zealand captain Kane Williamson, who will be leading his team in the much-awaited ICC World Test Championship Final against India at the Hampshire Bowl in Southampton from June 18.

Williamson, who missed the Kiwis’ 2nd Test against England at Edgbaston due to injury after scoring 13 runs in the drawn first Test at Lord’s, has fallen down to five points behind Smith’s 891 rating points and is second in the batters’ list.

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Smith has been at the top for 167 Tests played worldwide in total, only behind Garry Sobers (189 matches) and Viv Richards (179 matches).

Matt Henry’s player of the match performance (three wickets in each innings) has lifted him to a career-best 307 points and 64th position while Ajaz Patel too is at a career-high points tally of 323. Devon Conway continues his good run and is in joint-61st position.

England’s second innings total was their lowest against New Zealand at home but Dan Lawrence’s first innings unbeaten 81 has lifted him up 16 places to a career best 396 points.

The latest men’s weekly update, that also includes performances from the first Test between South Africa and the West Indies in St Lucia, sees Quinton de Kock in joint-12th position with Cheteshwar Pujara while his compatriot Adrian Markram has advanced two slots to reach 14th position.

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Meanwhile, Australia’s Marnus Labuschagne has remained in third with Team India skipper Virat Kohli securing the fourth spot, overtaking England captain Joe Root slipping down to fifth.

De Kock, who was named player of the match for scoring an unbeaten 141 that helped his team win by an innings and 63 runs, has gained 11 positions to attain his highest position since December 2019.

South Africa’s pace bowlers too have made rapid strides after the huge win.

Formerly top-ranked Kagiso Rabada has gained two spots to reach seventh place after a five-wicket haul in the second innings, Anrich Nortje is up into the top 30 for the first time in his career finishing with seven wickets in the match, while Lungi Ngidi is up 14 places to 44th position with a first-innings five-wicket haul.

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