Nonkululeko Mlaba of South Africa celebrates with Sinalo Jafta after she gets Sophia Dunkley of England 1920x1080

South Africa spinner rises to brink of top spot in T20I rankings

MRF Tyres ICC Rankings

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A match-defining spell against India in a T20I tri-series final has propelled emerging South Africa spinner Nonkululek Mlaba further up the latest MRF Tyres ICC Rankings.

Mlaba helped ensure the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup hosts warmed up for the tournament in ideal fashion, claiming 2/16 from four overs as South Africa beat India by 5 wickets last week.

The 22-year-old bowled opener Smriti Mandhana for one in the second over of the match, then claimed the wicket of Jemimah Rodrigues soon after to set the tone as India were restricted to 109/4.

Mlaba is now on the brink of completing a stunning surge up the MRF Tyres ICC T20I Rankings after climbing to the second spot in just 27 matches with 753 rankings points.

Since making a T20I debut against India in September 2019, the left-arm spinner has taken 22 wickets at an average of 21.86 while restricting the opposition to only 5.71 runs an over.

Video cwc19 01 Mar 20
WT20WC: SA v Pak - Mlaba bowls Sidra Nawaz
Mlaba bowls out Sidra Nawaz

England’s own left-arm spinner Sophie Ecclestone remains in the top spot with 763 ranking points.

India all-rounder Deepti Sharma drops to third place in the MRF Tyres ICC Women’s T20I Rankings despite opening the bowling and taking 1/19 in the same tri-series final.

Sneh Rana was the other big mover in the bowling rankings, rising four spots to sixth after claiming 2/21 in the final.

There were few changes at the top of the MRF Tyres ICC Women’s T20I Batting Rankings, with Australia duo Tahlia McGrath and Beth Mooney holding onto first and second spots respectively. 

Mandhana stays in the third spot despite being dismissed cheaply against South Africa, though does drop from 731 to 722 rankings points.

South Africa young gun Laura Wolvaardt was bundled out of the top-10 in the batting rankings after failing to score when opening the innings in the T20 tri-series final.

Wolvaardt moved from the more familiar first- or second-drop to open for South Africa throughout the tri-series, as the Women’s T20 World Cup hosts look to freshen up their approach for a successful tournament on home soil.

India skipper Harmanpreet Kaur remains on 612 rankings points and equal with Sri Lanka’s Chamari Athapaththu after scoring 21 runs against South Africa, both moving into the top-10 in place of Wolvaardt.

Video cwc19 31 Jan 23
Harmanpreet Kaur goes big against New Zealand | Greatest Moments


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