DHONI'S ACHIEVEMENT

PTI

Mahendra Singh Dhoni's half century against Pakistan in the second one-dayer in Abu Dhabi has propelled him to the top spot in the latest ICC one-day international rankings. Dhoni, who was placed second behind Australian captain Ricky Ponting before the two-match ODI series in the desert venue, hit 59 in India's series-levelling win in the second match.

However, the 1-1 result in the series meant that India and Pakistan remain unchanged in the team championship table, at the third and fourth places respectively.

The 24-year-old Jharkhand player, who made his ODI debut in December 2004, has made a remarkably rapid rise.

In 42 matches, he averages 52.76 with two hundreds and eight fifties and, equally significantly, he has made those runs at an awesome strike-rate of 103 runs.

Dhoni is one of three Indian batsmen in the top 10 with captain Rahul Dravid ninth (up two places) and Yuvraj Singh (10th) also featuring.

The injured Sachin Tendulkar is at joint-21 with Sri Lanka's Sanath Jayasuriya, while Virender Sehwag, who returned to form with a 73 against Pakistan recently, has moved up four places to joint 24th, alongside England's Andrew Strauss.

Irfan Pathan remains India's top-ranked bowler after moving up one spot to third with only Shaun Pollock of South Africa and Australia's Glenn McGrath ahead of him. Pathan also remains in the third position in the all-rounders' list behind Pollock and England's Andrew Flintoff, but he now has his best-ever haul of rating points.

Off-spinner Harbhajan Singh slipped three spots to the 10th position as a result of his sub-standard performances in Abu Dhabi.

However, several other Indian bowlers are on the way up. Ajit Agarkar is up four spots to the 21st position, Shanthakumaran Sreesanth rises 12 places to be joint 54th (alongside Bangladesh's Manjural Islam Rana) and Ramesh Powar has broken into the top 100, up 19 places to the 82nd spot.

LG ICC ODI Rankings (after the India-Pakistan series): Teams: 1. Australia (132), 2. South Africa (119), 3. India (116), 4. Pakistan (114), 5. New Zealand (113), 6. Sri Lanka (105), 7. England (103), 8. West Indies (89), 9. Zimbabwe (42), 10 Bangladesh (24) and 11. Kenya (7).

Batsmen: 1. Mahendra S. Dhoni (Ind), 2. Ricky Ponting (Aus), 3. Adam Gilchrist (Aus), 4. Andrew Symonds (Aus), 5 Graeme Smith (SA), 6. Mike Hussey (Aus), 7. Kevin Pietersen (Eng), 8. Kumara Sangakkara (SL), 9. Rahul Dravid (Ind) and 10. Yuvraj Singh (Ind).

Bowlers: 1. Shaun Pollock (SA), 2. Glenn McGrath (Aus), 3. Irfan Pathan (Ind), 4. Shane Bond (NZ), 5. Daniel Vettori (NZ), 6. Brett Lee (Aus), 7. M. Muralitharan (SL), 8. Nathan Bracken (Aus), 9. Chaminda Vaas (SL) and 10. Harbhajan Singh (Ind).

All-rounders: 1. Shaun Pollock (SA), 2. Andrew Flintoff (Eng), 3. Irfan Pathan (Ind), 4. Andrew Symonds (Aus) and 5. Shoaib Malik (Pak).