India held on to the number four position in the latest ICC ODI rankings despite not playing the 50-over format for more than two months. The Virat Kohli-led India have 112 rating points.
South Africa lead the chart with 119 rating points followed by Australia (118) and New Zealand (113).
India’s last ODI engagement was against England in January.
The West Indies and Pakistan will aim to consolidate their positions in their bid to qualify directly for the ICC World Cup 2019 when they will feature in a three-match ODI series starting in Guyana on Friday.
The West Indies, the 1975 and 1979 World Champions, is presently sitting in ninth position on 84 points, five points behind eighth-ranked 1992 winners Pakistan. Bangladesh, who recently drew its three-match series with Sri Lanka, are seventh on 92 points.
The West Indies leads Pakistan 15-13 on a head-to-head at home and have a chance to move ahead of the visiting side. But to make it happen, it will have to win all three matches. If it is able to achieve this, then it will join the green shirts on 87 points and will be ranked eighth as they will be ahead by a fraction of a point.
In contrast, if Pakistan, won 11 of 19 matches against the West Indies in the opposition’s backyard this decade, wins all the three matches, then it will join Bangladesh on 92 points and will be ranked ahead of its Asian rival by a fraction of a point.
England and the seven other top teams on September 30, 2017 will qualify directly for the World Cup with the remaining four teams getting a second chance through a 10-team qualifying tournament in 2018.
Meanwhile, in the chart for ODI batsmen, Pakistan’s Babar Azam will start as the highest-ranked batsman from either side in ninth position. Mohammad Hafeez is the next highest-ranked batsman in 26th position and Sarfraz Ahmed (39th). The West Indies’ highest-ranked batsman is skipper Jason Holder in 89th position.
South Africa captain AB de Villiers is the No. 1 ranked batsman and he is followed by Australia’s David Warner and Kohli of India.
Jason Holder (15th) leads the bowlers’ pack from either side, while Hafeez (37th) and Imad Wasim (47th) will also be aiming to improve their rankings.
In the all-rounders’ category, which is headed by Bangladesh’s Shakib Al Hasan, Hafeez (third) and Holder (ninth) feature prominently.
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