Pakistani leg-spinner Yasir Shah has become the first Pakistani bowler to top rankings since Mushtaq Ahmed achieved the feat 20 years ago in 1996. He is also the first legspinner since the legendary Shane Warne did in 2005, to be ranked number 1.
Shah reached the pinnacle of ICC Test bowler’s ranking after a brilliant bowling display in the first Test against England at Lord’s. Playing his first Test outside of Asia, the 30-year old took 10 for 141, including a second-innings haul of 4 for 69 on Sunday’s fourth day as Pakistan defeated England by 75 runs to take a 1-0 lead in thee four-match Test series.
In the first innings of the match, the leg-spinner became the first leg-spinner in 20 years to take a five-wicket haul in a Test innings at Lord’s. Shah’s compatriot Rahat Ali, who demolished England’s top order in the second innings, has jumped three places to achieve a career-best ranking at 32nd position.
Before the series, Yasir Shah was placed fourth on the list but has now leapfrogged English pacer James Anderson,who missed the first Test due to injury, to take the numero uno position. Indian off-spinner R Ashwin is at the second position while Anderson and his compatriot Stuart Broad are 3rd and 4th respectively in the list. Ravindra Jadeja, who is placed at sixth, is the other Indian bowler in the top ten.
This is the third time that a new No.1 Test bowler has been announced since January. Broad rose to the top position after the Johannesburg Test against South Africa, only for Anderson to take the title from him following his superb performances against Sri Lanka in Durham in May.
In the batting department, Australian skipper Steve Smith is leading the charts followed by Kane Williamson and Hashim Amla. English star Joe Root remained at fourth position after the Lord’s Test. No Indian batsman has made it into the top ten. Ajinkya Rahane, who is at the 12th position is the highest-ranked Indian batsman while Test skipper Virat Kohli is at 14th position.
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