Pakistan’s hopes of automatic World Cup qualification toughened
Australia scored a five-wicket win over Sri Lanka in the final match in Pallekele, while Pakistan earned a four-wicket consolation victory in the final match of the series in Cardiff. However, the Cardiff victory was not enough to prevent the green shirts from plummeting to its lowest-ever rating of 86 and in serious danger of failing to qualify automatically for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019.
Australia, which will aim to reclaim the ICC Champions Trophy title to add to its World Cup trophy, when it is staged next year in the United Kingdom, has moved from 123 points to 124 points, and in doing so, has opened up an 11-point advantage over New Zealand.
Sri Lanka has retained its sixth position but has dropped a point to finish on 101 points.
Sri Lanka’s one-point drop will interest seventh-placed Bangladesh, which is now just three points behind its Asian rival and has two upcoming three-match ODI series each against Afghanistan and England coming up. If Bangladesh wins all the three matches against Afghanistan, plus manages a series win against England, then it will achieve its highest-ever ranking of sixth.
Meanwhile, England, which will attempt to win its maiden 50-over ICC title when it hosts next year’s ICC Champions Trophy, has sent out a warning to the other sides after its impressive series win against Pakistan.
The series result against Pakistan has seen England move from 106 points to 107 points in fifth position – three behind India and South Africa, who are at 110 points each with India ranked ahead of South Africa on decimal points.
As for Pakistan, it has fallen to its lowest-ever points tally since the current rankings system was introduced in 2001. It started the series on 87 points and is now on 86 points – eight points behind eighth-ranked West Indies.
With Pakistan’s forthcoming ODI series being against the West Indies and Australia, it has left itself with a mountain to climb to keep alive its chances of qualifying automatically for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019.
England and the seven highest-ranked sides on the MRF Tyres ICC ODI Team Rankings as on 30 September 2017 will qualify directly for the ICC’s pinnacle 50-over tournament, while the remaining two sides will progress from the 10-team ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier 2018.
MRF Tyres ICC ODI Team Rankings (as of 4 September 2016, after Sri Lanka-Australia and England-Pakistan series)
Rank Team Points
1. Australia 124 (+1)
2. New Zealand 113
3. India 110
4. South Africa 110
5. England 107 (+1)
6. Sri Lanka 101 (-1)
7. Bangladesh 98
8. West Indies 94
9. Pakistan 86 (-1)
10. Afghanistan 49
11. Zimbabwe 46
12. Ireland 43
(Developed by David Kendix)