Ravichandran Ashwin’s eight-wicket haul in India’s resound victory over South Africa in the first Test at Vizag has propelled the off-spinner back into the top-10 of the ICC rankings for bowlers.
Making only first Test appearance for India in 2019, the 33-year-old was in fine flow in the first innings at Vizag where he picked up seven wickets to set up a 203-run win for the hosts.
Ashwin’s exploits saw him equal Sri Lanka legend Muttiah Muralitharan’s record of becoming the quickest in history to claim 350 Test dismissals with both the off-spinners attaining the feat in 66 matches apiece.
With his prolific show at Vizag, Ashwin jumped four spots in the ICC Test rankings to claim the 10th position in the table, according to a report by ESPNcricinfo. Meanwhile, Ashwin’s India team-mate Rohit Sharma’s electric debut in the opening spot saw the right-hander make a leap of 36 spots to rise to a career-best 17th in the batsmen’s rankings.
Rohit became the first Indian opener after Sunil Gavaskar to notch up twin tons in the same Test with the 32-year-old scoring 176 and 127 in his two innings at Vizag. Australia’s Steve Smith continued to top the batting charts and his lead over Virat Kohli has now stretched to a whopping 38 rating points following the India skipper’s failure to score big against South Africa.
There was joy for Ashwin’s spin partner Ravindra Jadeja in the latest update as well with the southpaw overtaking Bangladesh star Shakib Al Hasan to the No2 spot in the ICC rankings for Test all-rounders. Ashwin is in fifth place in the same table which is currently led by West Indies skipper Jason Holder.
Pakistan are looking to bounce back from a crushing loss in the series opener as they lock horns with Sri Lanka in the second T20I between the two sides at Lahore.
The hosts were shocked by 64-runs in the first T20I on Saturday by what is a second-string Sri Lanka side missing key senior stars such as Lasith Malinga and Angelo Mathews.
With the series on the line in front of their home fans, Sarfraz Ahmed and his men will look to give a much better account of themselves at the Gaddafi stadium as they seek to justify their No1 billing the format.
Will the hosts be able to square the series at Lahore or will Sri Lanka’s young guns provide another surprise? Find out by following the ball-by-ball LIVE updates from the Gaddafi stadium below.
Pakistan veteran Shoaib Malik wrote himself into the record books after becoming only the fourth batsman in history to breach the 9,000-run barrier in T20 cricket.
The 37-year-old attained the feat on Sunday in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) 2019 Qualifier 1 clash between Guyana Amazon Warriors and Barbados Tridents at Providence.
The Guyana skipper registered a brisk 19-ball 32 to help his side emerge victors by 30 runs in the CPL clash and qualify for Sunday’s final. The Pakistan all-rounder has been in fine form throughout the campaign for his side with a total of 313 runs which have come at a stellar average of 78.25.
Malik’s exploits have helped the Warriors maintain a perfect record in CPL 2019 with the side blazing their way to 10 wins in as many matches in the league-stage to book their place in the play-offs.
Malik is now only the fourth batsman to reach the special landmark of 9,000 runs with Chris Gayle, Brendon McCullum and Kieron Pollard being the previous players to attain the feat.
The veteran, along with Mohammad Hafeez, was not called up for Pakistan’s ongoing T20I series against Sri Lanka at Lahore although he remains available to play for his country in the format.
Malik had a poor campaign for Pakistan in the 2019 World Cup in England before being dropped from the playing XI. The Pakistan man subsequently announced his retirement from the ODI format but maintained that he was looking to play in the 2020 T20 World Cup in Australia.