Mujeeb Ur Rahman reached his career-best rank while Andrew Balbirnie made big gains in the rankings tables after the Ireland v Afghanistan one-day international series.
Afghanistan won the three-match series, which was played in Belfast, 2-1 after Rashid Khan led a sterling bowling effort in the final game, shooting the home side out for just 124 before the runs were knocked off in just 23.5 overs.
Khan, who returned 3/18 in eight overs in the game, held on to his second position on the bowlers’ table in the MRF Tyres ICC Men’s ODI Player Rankings, getting to 755 points.
It’s some way off his career high of 787 points from earlier this year, but just 20 behind table-topper Jasprit Bumrah, the India paceman.
The champion leggie’s spin twin, Mujeeb, however, did hit a career high by the end of the series. He picked up only two wickets in the three games but was economical all the way through, and reached 599 points and a rise of one spot to No.23, joint with England’s Liam Plunkett.
The top bowler in the series was undoubtedly Irish veteran Tim Murtagh, who returned 4/31 and 4/30 in the first two games. The 37-year-old paceman moved up two spots to 21st place as a result with 602 points against his name.
The other major mover for Ireland was Andrew Balbirnie, the top-order batsman who scored 55, 60 and 17 to comfortably top the series chart with 132 runs. It meant he rose 21 places to No.72 in the batters' ranking.
Rahmat Shah, Afghanistan’s steadying hand in the middle order, was second to Balbirnie with 94 runs, and remains his team’s top-ranked batsman in the format at No.31 – he now has a career-high 601 points.
Afghan legend Mohammad Nabi, who completed 100 ODI appearances during the course of the series, didn’t have too good a time with the bat, scoring just 14 runs in two innings, and slipped four spots to 58th. He was much better with the ball, picking up two wickets in each game, but still went down a spot to No.17.
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