The International Cricket Council (ICC) on Thursday launched the official ICC Women’s Team Rankings, which incorporate results in all three formats of the game into one rankings system. Not surprisingly, Australia is ranked number one following its success in the ICC Women’s World Cup 2013 in India and the ICC Women’s World Twenty20 2014 in Bangladesh. It also leads the ICC Women’s Championship, which is the qualifying tournament for the ICC Women’s World Cup 2017.
England is ranked second in the 10-team table, 10 points behind Australia, followed by New Zealand (109), India (105), West Indies (99), South Africa (92), Pakistan (81), Sri Lanka (74), Bangladesh (57) and Ireland (26). Teams will be added to the table as and when they reach the required standard. The launch of ICC Women’s Team Rankings is part of the ICC’s long-term commitment to investing, incentivising, promoting and publicising women’s cricket, which has already started to drive substantial increase in public interest and participation as well as a marked improvement in the standard of the international game.
The innovative new system treats results from Test, ODI and T20I cricket equally. This means there will be rankings points to play for in every international match, while the volume of matches will ensure the table is a credible reflection of overall performance. The ICC Women’s Team Rankings have been devised by statistician and ICC Cricket Committee member David Kendix, who has applied the same methodology as is used for the men’s rankings. The rankings table is based on results between three and four years, but with the first two years being weighted at only 50 per cent. Currently, results from October 2012 to September 2014 are weighted at 50 per cent, while results since October 2014 are weighted at 100 per cent.
The annual update of the ICC Women’s Team Rankings, in which the oldest results will be dropped from rankings and the weightings updated, will be carried out on 1 October each year, whereas the annual updates for men’s Test, ODI and T20I team rankings take place in May. Australia captain Meg Lanning, the world’s number-one batter in ODIs, had more than one reason to be delighted with the news of the launch of women’s rankings: ‘It’s certainly nice to be recognised as world number one. We’ve done a lot of hard work in the past few years to win the ICC Women’s World Cup and ICC Women’s World Twenty, as well as the Ashes recently. We are looking forward to staying at the top of the tree for a long time, which is going to be a big challenge but we have the players to do that.’
The ICC Women’s Team Rankings will be updated at the end of each series. ICC Women’s Team Rankings (as on 1 October 2015)
1 Australia 134
2 England 124
3 New Zealand 109
4 India 105
5 West Indies 99
6 South Africa 92
7 Pakistan 81
8 Sri Lanka 74
9 Bangladesh 57
10 Ireland 26