Australia has surged to the top of the Reliance ICC One-Day International (ODI) Team Rankings after completing a 3-0 series victory over Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Sunday night’s dramatic one-run victory in Abu Dhabi and the cancellation of the third ODI between India and the West has ensured top billing for George Bailey’s side as the race to the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 heats up amongst some of the top-ranked sides. The cancellation of Tuesday’s ODI between India and the West Indies in Visakhapatnam due to a natural disaster, means India cannot leapfrog Australia even if wins the remaining two matches in Dharamshala and Kolkata on 17 and 20 October, respectively.
In that, scenario, Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s side will fall 0.02 ratings points short of Australia, which is now sitting on 114 ratings points. It has taken Australia five ODIs to regain the number-one ranking after it had dropped from the top pedestal in Harare on 31 August following a three wickets defeat against Zimbabwe. Australia has won four of the last five ODIs with its only loss coming against South Africa in the triangular series final in Harare on 6 September.
In the ICC Players Rankings for ODI Bowlers, Australia fast bowler Mitchell Johnson has moved up two places to fifth following figures of three for 24 runs and three for 40 in the opening two ODI’s. Pakistan’s Mohammad Irfan has vaulted five places to 27th position after claiming three wickets in the series, while Shahid Afridi has also climbed six places after a consistent display and the leg-spinner is level with Australia’s Xavier Doherty – who drops two places – in 35th position. In the ICC ODI Player Rankings, Australia’s hard-hitting opener David Warner has risen three places to 40th after scores of 43, 29 and 56.