ISLAMABAD: Pakistan opener Mohammad Rizwan has been rewarded for his excellent finish in the recently completed T20I series against New Zealand by making ground on India star Suryakumar Yadav at the top of the MRF Tyres ICC Men’s T20I Batting Rankings.
Rizwan compiled an unbeaten 98* during the fifth and final match of the T20I series against the Black Caps and the right-hander ended the series as Pakistan’s leading run-scorer with a total of 162 runs.
That helped Rizwan close the gap on Suryakumar to less than 100 rating points, with the dynamic India star still leading the way with 906 rating points while the Pakistan veteran rises from 798 to 811 points and maintains a second place on the rankings.
Pakistan skipper Babar Azam holds onto third place on the latest T20I rankings for batters, although the right-hander dropped 13 rating points to 756 points after he managed just 19 runs in the final match of the series.
Middle-order batters Mark Chapman of New Zealand and Iftikhar Ahmed of Pakistan are the big movers as they have attained career-best positions at the end of their five-match series that ended 2-2 with the last two matches played in Rawalpindi over the past week.
Chapman, who smashed unbeaten knocks of 71 off 42 deliveries and 104 off 57 in those two matches to finish with a series-topping aggregate of 290 runs, has rocketed 48 places to 35th in the rankings.
Chapman’s previous best ranking was 54th attained in February 2018.
Iftikhar, who scored 36 in the final match, has proceeded six places to the joint-38th position. He is the third-highest-ranked Pakistan batter after Rizwan and Babar, who are ranked second and third in the list led by India’s Suryakumar Yadav.
Iftikhar’s previous best was 43rd position in November last year.
Others to move up the T20I rankings after the series are New Zealand players Chad Bowes (up 82 places to 118th in the batting rankings) and Ish Sodhi (up two places to 14th in the bowling rankings) while Pakistan all-rounder Imad Wasim has moved up all three lists.
Imad is up 15 places to 127th among batters after scoring 31 in the final match, while his hauls of three for 19 and two 21 have lifted him 120 places to 93rd in the bowling rankings. He is also up 44 places to 24th among all-rounders.
In the weekly ODI rankings update, which considers performances in the Oman-Nepal match of the ACC Men’s Premier Cup in Kirtipur, Nepal leg-spinner Sandeep Lamichhane has moved up one slot to 22nd position among bowlers after finishing with three for 45 while Kushal Malla’s 108 off 64 balls has lifted him 35 places to 110th position.
Oman’s left-arm spinner Zeeshan Maqsood has moved up two places to 49th in the bowling rankings.