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South Africa extends lead as number-one ranked Test side

India moves into second position but third-ranked England can regain No.2 spot if it wins the Ashes 3-0 or better

South Africa extends lead as number-one ranked Test side - Cricket News
Graeme Smith of South Africa poses with the Mace during the ICC Test Championship mace handover.
South Africa has strengthened its position as the number-one ranked Test side after the annual update of the Reliance ICC Test Championship Table. The Proteas have gained seven ratings points, lifting it to 135 ratings points – 19 ratings points clear of second-ranked India.   

The annual update ensures that the Reliance ICC Test Championship table continues to reflect recent form, with older results being discarded. At the recent ICC Board meeting, it was decided that the annual update to the Test, ODI and T20I rankings should now take place on 1 May each year, rather than 1 August, since this better aligns with the current international calendar.  

This change has been incorporated in the latest update, and has been backdated to 1 May 2013.   

The updated table now reflects all Test series completed after 1 August 2010. All series played until the start of May 2014 will be added to this table, so that by May 2014, the ratings will be based on just under four years of results, with series completed prior to 1 August 2012 weighted at 50 per cent and subsequent results valued at 100 per cent.   

South Africa’s extended lead at the top of the table is due to its outstanding form in the Test arena, where it has not lost a Test match for 18 months and has not lost a Test series during the entire rankings period.  In 2012-2013 (the period in which results are weighted at 100 per cent), South Africa has remained unbeaten, defeating England 2-0, Australia 1-0, New Zealand 2-0 and Pakistan 3-0.

​In the updated table, India has now moved into second place ahead of England. Despite England having won its last two Test series against India, it now finds itself below MS Dhoni’s side on account of its less consistent performances in other recent series, in particular against Pakistan (0-3), South Africa (0-2) and away to eighth ranked New Zealand (0-0). Also, India’s two 4-0 defeats in England and Australia in 2011-12 are now only weighted at 50%, reducing their impact on India’s overall rating.

Opportunity for England to move to second place   

Although England has dropped behind India into third spot, Alastair Cook’s team can reclaim the number two spot by winning the upcoming Ashes series, starting on 10 July in Trent Bridge, Nottingham.   

​England needs to win by a margin of 3-0 or better to move into second place. On the other hand, if Australia regains the Ashes it will move up a place to third, bumping England down one place to fourth.    

 Result                                     England                               Australia   
                                         Rating         Position           Rating       Position  
England win by 5 Tests       119                   2                   98                 6  
England win by 4 Tests       117                   2                   99                 5  
England win by 3 Tests       116                   2                 101                 5    
England win by 2 Tests       115                   3                 102                 5  
England win by 1 Test         113                   3                 104                 4  
Series Drawn                      111                   3                 107                 4  
Australia win by 1 Test        108                   4                 110                 3  
Australia win by 2 Tests      107                   4                  111                3  
Australia win by 3 Tests      105                   4                  113                3  
Australia win by 4 Tests      104                   4                  114                3  
Australia win by 5 Tests      103                   4                  116                3 

Reliance ICC Test Championship (as of 8 July, after the annual update and before the Ashes)   

Rank        (+/-)            Team                Rating(+/-)   
1                (-)           South Africa           135(+7) 
2              (+1)           India                     116 (+4) 
3               (-1)           England                112 (-3) 
4                (-)            Australia               105 (-5) 
5                (-)            Pakistan               102 (-2) 
6              (+1)           West Indies            99 (+7) 
7               (-1)           Sri Lanka                88 (-4) 
8                (-)            New Zealand           79 (-2) 
9                (-)            Bangladesh            10 (+4)    

Zimbabwe is currently unranked, as it has played isufficient matches. 

It has 183 points and a rating of 23.
   
(Developed by David Kendix)   

For more information on the Reliance ICC Test Championship click here.   

For information on the ICC Player Rankings go to: www.relianceiccrankings.com.

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