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Shuffling of the pack on the cards in an exciting month of Test cricket

Bangladesh
Seven Test nations will be in action across Asia during the course of November 2018.

⦁ Bangladesh, England, New Zealand, Pakistan and Sri Lanka have an opportunity to move up the ladder; the Windies will defend their eighth place in the rankings

⦁ Galle Test will be Rangana Herath’s 93rd and last for Sri Lanka

The sport’s traditionalists will have one eye on Asia where seven of the world’s proud Test playing countries will not only try to establish their dominance over their respective rivals, but will also aim to improve their rankings in the MRF Tyres ICC Men’s Test Team Rankings.

Sarfraz Ahmed led Pakistan to a 1-0 series win over Australia last month
Sarfraz Ahmed led Pakistan to a 1-0 series win over Australia last month

Bangladesh will play host to Zimbabwe and the Windies in a two-Test series each, England will travel to Galle for first of the three Tests against Sri Lanka, while the United Arab Emirates will be the stage for the three-Test series between Pakistan and New Zealand.

Virat Kohli’s India leads the Test team rankings, but only 11 points separate second-ranked South Africa from seventh-ranked Pakistan. This means there could be movement in the middle of the pack, depending on how the four series pans out.

Bangladesh can move ahead of the Windies in eighth place but to make that happen, they will have to win all the four Tests; England can rise to second, but will have to win the series; Sri Lanka can move ahead of fifth-placed Australia, but will have to win all the three Tests; New Zealand will rise to second irrespective of how Sri Lanka-England series ends if they sweep the three-Test series against Pakistan; while Pakistan can move ahead of Australia if they win 3-0. 

The following are some permutations:

Bangladesh (67 points) v Zimbabwe (2 points)

⦁ If Bangladesh beat Zimbabwe 2-0 - Bangladesh 68 points, Zimbabwe 0

⦁ If series ends in a draw - Bangladesh 61 points, Zimbabwe 13 points

Bangladesh v the West Indies (76 points)

⦁ If Bangladesh (68 points, following a 2-0 series win over Zimbabwe) beat the West Indies (76 points) 2-0, they will rise to 76 points while the West Indies will drop to 71 points

⦁ If Bangladesh (68 points, following a 2-0 series win over Zimbabwe) draw with the West Indies, then Bangladesh will finish on 69 points while the West Indies will slip to 75 points

Sri Lanka (97 points) v England (105 points)

⦁ If Sri Lanka beat England 3-0 - Sri Lanka (New Zealand, Sri Lanka and Australia will be on 102 points, Sri Lanka will ranked above Australia), England 100 points

⦁ If Sri Lanka beat England 2-0 - Sri Lanka 101, England 101. England will be ranked above Sri Lanka

⦁ If Sri Lanka beat England 2-1 or 1-0 – Sri Lanka 100, England (102, ahead of Australia by a fraction)

⦁ If England beat Sri Lanka 3-0 – England 108 points (2nd), Sri Lanka 93 points

⦁ If England beat Sri Lanka 2-0 – England 107 points (2nd), Sri Lanka 94 points

⦁ If England beat Sri Lanka 2-1 or 1-0 – England 106 (2nd, ahead of SA by a fraction), Sri Lanka 95 points

Pakistan (95 points) v New Zealand (102 points) (team rankings will depend on how Sri Lanka-England series pans out as the Test table is updated at the end of a series)

⦁ If Pakistan beat New Zealand 3-0 – Pakistan 103, New Zealand 94

⦁ If Pakistan beat New Zealand 2-1 or 1-0 – Pakistan 99, New Zealand 98

⦁ If Pakistan beat New Zealand 2-0 – Pakistan 101, New Zealand 96

⦁ If New Zealand beat Pakistan 3-0 – New Zealand 109, Pakistan 89

⦁ If New Zealand beat Pakistan 2-1 or 1-0 – New Zealand 105, Pakistan 92

⦁ If New Zealand beat Pakistan 2-0 – New Zealand 107, Pakistan 90

Meanwhile, New Zealand captain Kane Williamson and James Anderson of England will be the highest-ranked Test batter and bowler, respectively, who will be in action in the ICC’s pinnacle format this month.

Williamson is presently ranked third in the MRF Tyres ICC Player Rankings for Test Batsmen, but England captain Joe Root is narrowly behind him in fourth position.

Dimuth Karunaratne of Sri Lanka is his side’s highest-ranked batsman in seventh position, Azhar Ali is Pakistan’s highest-ranked batsman in 15th spot, Mushfiqur Rahim is Bangladesh’s highest-ranked batsman in the absence of Shakib Al Hasan, while Brendan Taylor is Zimbabwe’s highest-ranked batsman in 46th position.

The Sri Lanka versus England series opener in Galle will be Rangana Herath’s 93rd and final Test. The left-arm spinner had made his debut at the same venue against Australia 19 years ago and will enter in his final Test as his side’s highest-ranked bowler in seventh place. With 430 wickets, he is his country’s second most successful bowler after Muttiah Muralidaran.  

After his spectacular performance against Australia last month, Pakistan’s Mohammad Abbas will be the other bowler to watch-out for this month. He is currently ranked third in the MRF Tyres ICC Player Rankings for Test Bowlers, but given he is still in the qualification period for bowlers, it is likely that he will move even further up the ladder depending on how he performs in the series.

Joe Root's England get ready for a three-match Test series against Sri Lanka
Joe Root's England get ready for a three-match Test series against Sri Lanka

New Zealand’s Trent Boult is sitting in sixth place and he will try to move ahead of fifth-ranked Ravindra Jadeja, who is 17 points ahead.

Mehedi Hasan will enter the Sylhet Test as Bangladesh’s highest-ranked bowler in 35th position.

The Test player rankings will now be updated following the conclusion of the Galle Test.

Schedule of Test series in November:

Bangladesh v Zimbabwe

3-7 November – 1st Test, Sylhet

11-15 November – 2nd Test, Mirpur

Sri Lanka v England

6-10 November – 1st Test, Galle

14-18 November – 2nd Test, Pallekele

23-27 November – 3rd Test, SSC

Pakistan v New Zealand

16-20 November – 1st Test, Abu Dhabi

24-28 November – 2nd Test, Dubai

3-7 December – 3rd Test, Abu Dhabi

Bangladesh v West Indies

22-26 November – 1st Test, Chittagong

30 November – 4 December – 2nd Test, Mirpur

MRF Tyres ICC Men’s Test Team Rankings (as on 1 November):

RANKTEAMPOINTS
1India116
2South Africa106
3England105
4New Zealand102
5Australia102
6Sri Lanka97
7Pakistan95
8West Indies76
9Bangladesh67
10Zimbabwe2
11Afghanistan0
12Ireland0


(Developed by David Kendix)

MRF Tyres ICC Men’s Player Rankings (As on 1 November):

BATSMEN (top 20)

RankPlayerTeamPointsAvgeHighest Rating
1Virat KohliInd93554.57937 v Eng at Southampton 2018
2Steve SmithAus91061.37947 v SA at Durban 2018
3Kane WilliamsonNZ84750.35893 v Aus at Perth 2015
4Joe RootEng83551.04917 v Aus at Trent Bridge 2015
5David WarnerAus80348.2880 v NZ at Perth 2015
6C. PujaraInd76549.54888 v SL at Nagpur 2017
7D. KarunaratneSL754!37.28754 v SA at Colombo (SSC) 2018
8D. ChandimalSL73344.96755 v Win at St Lucia 2018
9Dean ElgarSA72441.05784 v Aus at Johannesburg 2018
10Aiden MarkramSA703*47.27759 v Aus at Johannesburg 2018
11Usman KhawajaAus69943.83747 v Pak at Sydney 2017
12Ross TaylorNZ69747.22871 v Win at Hamilton 2013
13Hashim AmlaSA67347.23907 v Pak at Abu Dhabi 2013
14Faf du PlessisSA66542.33734 v Ind at Centurion 2018
15Azhar AliPak64844.19787 v Aus at Melbourne 2016
16Kusal MendisSL64136.78693 v Win at St Lucia 2018
17Jonny BairstowEng63737.19772 v SA at Old Trafford 2017
18Ajinkya RahaneInd63341.4825 v NZ at Indore 2016
19=Shakib Al HasanBan63239.69694 v Aus at Mirpur 2017
 Kraigg BrathwaiteWin63236.54701 v Eng at Headingley 2017


BOWLERS (top 20)

RankPlayerTeamPointsAvgeHighest Rating
1James AndersonEng89926.84903 v Ind at Lord's 2018
2Kagiso RabadaSA88221.71902 v Aus at Port Elizabeth 2018
3M. AbbasPak829*!15.64829 v Aus at Abu Dhabi 2018
4Vernon PhilanderSA82621.54912 v Ind at Johannesburg 2013
5Ravindra JadejaInd81223.5899 v Aus at Ranchi 2017
6Trent BoultNZ79527.84825 v Eng at Lord's 2015
7Rangana HerathSL79127.95867 v Zim at Harare 2016
8Pat CumminsAus784*23.81800 v SA at Johannesburg 2018
9R. AshwinInd77725.44904 v Eng at Mumbai 2016
10Jason HolderWin766*!28.5766 v Ind at Hyderabad 2018
11Neil WagnerNZ76528.26785 v Win at Wellington 2017
12Josh HazlewoodAus74426.84863 v Ind at Bengaluru 2017
13=Stuart BroadEng73428.92880 v SA at Johannesburg 2016
 Shannon GabrielWin73430.2757 v Ban at Jamaica 2018
15Tim SoutheeNZ72030.82799 v Win at Jamaica 2014
16Nathan LyonAus70632.21774 v Eng at Adelaide 2017
17Mitchell StarcAus69328.52805 v SA at Durban 2018
18Keshav MaharajSA692*27.65695 v Zim at Port Elizabeth 2017
19       Shakib Al HasanBan66531.87705 v Aus at Mirpur 2017
20       Kemar RoachWin65428.31774 v SA at Centurion 2014


ALL-ROUNDERS (top five)

RankPlayerTeamPointsHighest Rating
1Shakib Al HasanBan420489 v Aus at Mirpur 2017
2Ravindra JadejaInd400438 v SL at Colombo (SSC) 2017
3Jason HolderWin380 /*381 v Ind at Hyderabad 2018
4Vernon PhilanderSA370378 v SL at Galle 2018
5R. AshwinInd341493 v Eng at Mohali 2016


* indicates provisional rating; a batsman qualifies for a full rating after playing 40 Test innings; a bowler qualifies for a full rating when he reaches 100 Test wickets.
! indicates career-highest rating

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