England’s seven wicket victory over South Africa in the third test, not only sealed victory in the series with a game to spare. It also saw a number of players improving their individually rankings including man of the match Stuart Broad.
England went into the third test with a 1-0 lead in the four-match series with South Africa. After the first innings of the match had been completed, England had a 10 run lead over their hosts. South Africa made a steady start and reached 23 without loss before Broad started his magnificent spell of five wickets for one run off 31 balls.
That spell saw South Africa reduced to 35 for five and were eventually bowled out for 83 and Broad finished with figures of six for 17 in the second innings and match figures of eight for 99 that saw him being awarded the man of the match award.
Broad’s performance has seen him move to number one in ICC bowler ranking for Test matches. He started the match in third position. But has now moved above India’s Ravi Ashwin and South Africa’s Dale Steyn at the top of the rankings. Broad the first Englishman to top the bowling since Steven Harmison in 2004.
Root and Stokes Make Moves
The performances of Joe Root and Ben Stokes has also seen them both make a move up the rankings. Root scored his ninth test century in the first innings as his 110 proved crucial as England gained parity with South Africa. This has seen the Yorkshireman move back up to number two in the batting rankings. He is sandwiched in between Australia’s Steven Smith and New Zealander Kane Williamson at the top of the rankings and it looks like those three will be fighting it out for spot for a number of years.
All-rounder Stokes once again impressed with both bat and ball in the third test and moved up in both rankings as well as the all-rounder rankings list. Stokes took match figures of five for 77 with the ball and scored a quick-fire 58 in the first innings as he and Root threatened to bat South Africa out of the game.
Stokes has move up two places in the bowling rankings and now sits in 33rd place, while his performances with the bat in recent games, see him ranked 36th in batting rankings. In the overall all-rounder rankings has risen three places to claim sixth. It won’t be long before stokes is ranked number one all-rounder in Test cricket if he carries on putting in performances like we seen in this series.
South Africa to Lose Top Spot
South Africa came into this series as the number one ranked team in Test cricket, but will lose their position at the top of the rankings whatever the result in the final match. South Africa need to win the final match of the series to only drop one place to second. A draw would see them drop to third while defeat would see them drop down fourth.
England though appear to be on a up as a team and will be hoping to challenge for that top spot once again before long. They started this series in sixth place behind New Zealand. Whatever the result in the final match against South Africa, England will move above New Zealand into fifth place.
This article is for the-newshub.com