Australia Reclaim Top Test Ranking

Australia celebrate
Australia celebrate their series win in South Africa which helped them back to the top of the Test rankings
©REUTERS / Action Images

Australia have returned to the top of the ICC Test rankings for the first time since 2009 following the annual update, overtaking South Africa.

ICC Test rankings

1. Australia 123 points
2. South Africa 123
3. England 104
4. Pakistan 103
5. India 102
6. New Zealand 92
7. Sri Lanka 90
8. West Indies 76
9. Zimbabwe 40
10. Bangladesh 21

ICC ODI rankings

1. Australia 115
2. India 112
3. Sri Lanka 111
4. England 110
5. South Africa 109
6. Pakistan 100
7. New Zealand 98
8. West Indies 94
9. Bangladesh 73
10. Zimbabwe 61
11. Ireland 34
12. Afghanistan 34

The rankings have been updated to discount results in the 2010/11 season and give results in the 2012/13 season a weighting of 50 per cent.

That means that Australia 'lose' series defeats to India and England in 2010/11 and they are not as heavily penalised for the 4-0 loss in India in 2013.

They also remain on top of the One-Day International rankings, topping both tables for the first time since 2008.

Their lead over South Africa in the Test rankings is miniscule, but they are three points clear of 2013 Champions Trophy winners India in the ODI rankings.

"There has been an enormous amount of hard work and effort on and off the field that has led to this result," Australia Test captain Michael Clarke said.
"However, the true test of a great side is sustained success and now our goal is to maintain these rankings and continue to play great cricket as we lead into challenging Test series against Pakistan and India, and the ICC Cricket World Cup at home," he added.

Beating England 5-0 at home and then winning 2-1 in South Africa put Australia on course for the number one ranking which they now hold.

"We had a fantastic home summer against England and a great series win away against South Africa earlier this year, but the challenge now is to continue that form," Clarke said.
"We have a huge amount of respect for the South Africa side, and the length it held the number-one Test ranking is testament to the great side it is. South Africa will no doubt continue to be a formidable opponent in Test match cricket."

Australia have now topped the rankings for a total of 74 months since they were introduced in 2003 with South Africa in second place, with 23 months at the top.

Elsewhere, as Australia take over from South Africa by a matter of fractions, India drop from third to fifth with England and Pakistan overtaking them to jump to third and fourth respectively.

© Cricket World 2014