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Top Test batter Steve Smith

Australia’s Steven Smith has become the second youngest batsman after Sachin Tendulkar of India to achieve the number-one ranking in the Reliance ICC Player Rankings for Test Batsmen after stellar batting displays in the Kingston Test, which Australia won by 277 runs to win the series 2-0.

Despite missing out on what would have been his first double century in his 28th Test, Smith has leapfrogged Kumar Sangakkara of Sri Lanka and South Africa duo of AB de Villiers and Hashim Amla following scores of 199 and 54 not out in the latest rankings, which were released on Monday morning.

However, Sangakkara will have a chance to reclaim his number-one ranking when he features in the series against Pakistan, which starts in Galle on Wednesday.
It has been a meteoric rise for Smith who, at 26 years and 12 days, is only a few months short of Tendulkar, who had topped the batting chart for the first time in 1999 at the age of 25 years and 279 days.

In achieving the landmark, Smith has also become the 23rd Australia batsman to date to top the batting table, with the last being captain Michael Clarke in January 2013. Steve Waugh spent 94 Tests as number-one – more than any other Australia batsman – while Don Bradman spent a record 6,320 days as the top-ranked batsman – more than anyone else in the history of the game.

Smith has gained 49 points from his efforts in Jamaica, which means he has also broken the 900-point barrier for the first time in his career. This makes him the 29th batsman to date and eighth Australia batsman after Bradman (961), Ricky Ponting (942), Matthew Hayden (935), Doug Walters (922), Neil Harvey (921), Mike Hussey (921) and Michael Clarke (900) to achieve the rare distinction, which in ranking terms means truly outstanding. He now sits on 913 points, which has given him 24th spot on the list of best Test ratings ever.

Last year in December, Smith had entered the four-Test series against India in 13th position on 730 points. This means he has earned 183 points and 12 places in six Tests, thanks to his aggregate of 1,052 runs at an average of 131.50, including six centuries and three half centuries.

Meanwhile, Clarke has moved up one place to 14th in the latest batting table, while Adam Voges has moved up five places to 60th. For the West Indies, Jason Holder has continued his fine run of recent form with the bat and his 82 not out in the first innings has helped him launch 21 places to a career-high 67th.

In the Reliance ICC Player Rankings for Test Bowlers, Australia fast bowlers Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood have also achieved career-best rankings to date.

Starc has moved up four places to 21st after match figures of four for 84, while Hazlewood has also gained four places following match figures of seven for 56 and is now in 27th spot.

For the West Indies, Jerome Taylor’s match figures of six for 71 have elevated him 13 places to 22nd.

In the Reliance ICC Test Team Rankings, Australia has retained its second position on 111 points, 19 points behind leader South Africa and 14 ahead of fifth-placed England.

Reliance ICC Test Player Rankings (as on 15 June

Batsmen (top 10) 

Rank     (+/-)      Player                  Team     Pts         Ave        HS Rating

1          (+3)       Steven Smith       Aus        913      56.23    913 v WI at Jamaica 2015

2          (-1)        K. Sangakkara     SL          909       58.66    938 v Eng at Kandy 2007

3          (-1)        AB de Villiers     SA          908       52.09    935 v Aus at Port Elizabeth 2014

4          (-1)        Hashim Amla      SA          891       52.78    907 v Pak at Abu Dhabi 2013

5          ( – )         Angelo Mathews SL          841       51.50    877 v NZ at Christchurch 2014

6          ( – )         Younus Khan      Pak         836       53.75    880 v SL at Lahore 2009

7          ( – )         Joe Root               Eng        815       54.11    872 v NZ at Lord’s 2015

8          ( – )         K. Williamson     NZ          813       45.70    860 v Eng at Lord’s 2015

9          (+2)       Misbah-ul-Haq   Pak         770       49.18    842 v NZ at Abu Dhabi 2014

10         (-1)        David Warner     Aus        757       46.82    880 v Ind at Adelaide 2014

 

Bowlers (top 10)

Rank     (+/-)      Player                  Team     Pts          Ave        HS Rating

1          ( – )         Dale Steyn           SA          905       22.55    909 v WI at Centurion 2014

2          ( – )         James Anderson Eng        824       29.42    847 v WI at Barbados 2015

3          (+1)       Trent Boult          NZ          814       27.12    825 v Eng at Lord’s 2015

4          (-1)        Ryan Harris         Aus        810       23.52    870 v SA at Cape Town 2014

5          (+1)       Rangana Herath  SL          807       29.57    851 v Pak at Colombo (SSC) 2014

6          (-1)        M. Johnson          Aus        803       27.58    849 v Pak at Dubai 2014

7          ( – )         Stuart Broad        Eng        782       29.77    783 v WI at Lord’s 2012

8          ( – )         V. Philander        SA          780       21.95    912 v Ind at Johannesburg 2013

9          ( – )         Morne Morkel    SA          727       29.35    776 v Aus at Cape Town 2011

10         ( – )         Tim Southee        NZ          713       31.63    799 v WI at Jamaica 2014