Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Sehwag back in top 5 of Test rankings

Virender Sehwag today stormed into the top five of the ICC Player Rankings for Test batsmen by virtue of his superlative double-century against Sri Lanka in the third Test in Mumbai.

Sehwag's 293, which turned out to be the cornerstone of his side's victory that ultimately gave India the number-one position in the ICC Test Championship table for the first time, has rocketed him 14 places to the fifth position which he shares with Pakistan captain Mohammad Yousuf.

Sehwag's Delhi teammate Gautam Gambhir leads the batting table with Sri Lanka duo of Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara second and third.

It is the first time since October 2006 that Sehwag has returned to the top five.
From the Mumbai Test alone, the 31-year-old Delhi dasher has gained 91 points which makes him one of the six batsmen above the 800-point mark.

It has been an outstanding and memorable series for Sehwag who not only scored 491 runs in four innings but also gained 16 places in the batting table after starting the series in 21st position.

Also moving in the right direction are the India pair of Rahul Dravid (16th) -- up by two places -- and VVS Laxman (19th), who improved his position by a rung.

Australia vice-captain Michael Clarke, who scored 71 and 61 not out, has also climbed one position to fourth spot but captain Ricky Ponting has dropped out of the top 10 for the first time since October 2002.

India maestro Sachin Tendulkar has also conceded two spots and now sits in 18th position after scoring 53 in his only outing on his home ground.

India fast bowler Zaheer Khan, who took match figures of 6-142 in the Mumbai Test, has also gained a valuable place which has now put him inside the top 10 bowlers' chart.

The list is still headed by South Africa fast bowler Dale Steyn with Australia's Mitchell Johnson second and Muttiah Muralitharan of Sri Lanka third.

Meanwhile, Australia needs to beat the West Indies in the third and final Test starting in Perth from 16 December if it wants to end 2009 in third position.

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