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World Test Championship, India
Indian test team[photo: Twitter]
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India Holds Edge In WTC Final For Getting All Bases Covered: Sridharan Sriram

Sridharan Sriram, former India batsman and assistant coach of Australia is expecting an intense Word Test Championship (WTC) final between India and New Zealand at Southampton in England next month.

Having toured England in recent times as part of the Australian coaching staff, he believes that India holds the edge and tips the Virat Kohli-led side to claim the trophy.

Sridharan Sriram
Sridharan Sriram. Image-Twitter

Sridharan Sriram: Well Balanced India Have A Good Chance To Win And They Have Got All Bases Covered

The New Zealand pace bowling quartet of Trent Boult, Tim Southee, Neil Wagner, and Kyle Jamieson was crucial in them qualifying for the final as they won all their games at home in the WTC cycle defeating India, West Indies, and Pakistan 2-0 each. They will once again pose a massive challenge to Virat Kohli and other batsmen.

“India is a quality side. Having done well against England in the last Test series, they will carry that confidence into the WTC final. They have a good chance to win,” said Sridharan Sriram.

Trent Boult, Tim Southee and Neil Wagner [Image-Getty]
Trent Boult, Tim Southee and Neil Wagner [Image-Getty]
New Zealand, meanwhile, will have the advantage of playing a Test series against England before the WTC final and have a good pace attack to exploit the conditions in England. Some former cricketers feel that New Zealand has the edge, but Sridharan Sriram disagreed.

“I don’t think so. I think India is a very well-balanced side, they’ve got all bases covered. And the quality of India’s bowling will test the New Zealand batsmen. The Indian batsmen have a lot of experience now of playing overseas, so I do not think that New Zealand has an upper hand because of their bowling,” explained the former India batsman.

While the pitches in England in general aid the fast bowlers, particularly those who can move the ball in the air, Sridharan Sriram believes that the wicket at Ageas Bowl in Southampton will help spinners. Sridharan Sriram also noted that the Rose Bowl in Southampton will offer some purchase to the spinners. He hopes that Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja will make good use of these conditions.

“From experience, I know that the surface in Southampton will help spinners. Both R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja will get a good purchase,” said Sriram.

On the 2018 tour, India was quite reliant on Virat Kohli to deliver the goods. After struggling in 2014, the Indian skipper returned four years later and proved his mettle in those conditions with a total of 593 runs in five Tests at an average close to 60.

Sridharan Sriram Don’t Think India Is Over Dependent On Virat Kohli Which Was Evident From Win In Australia Without Him

While Sridharan Sriram acknowledges that the presence of Virat Kohli will once again make a big difference, he feels that the recent Australia tour – where he played just the first Test – was evidence that others are equally capable.

“I don’t think they (India) are over-dependent on Kohli because they beat Australia in Australia without him. But obviously having Kohli is a big advantage given his caliber,” Sriram said.

Virat Kohli, Image Source : AP IMAGE
Virat Kohli, Image Source: AP IMAGE

“His biggest attribute is the intensity he brings to every practice session. His desire to be the world’s best is unmatched,” observed Sriram, who has worked with Kohli in his capacity as batting and spin bowling coach of Royal Challengers Bangalore.

The WTC final between India and New Zealand will kick off on 18 June. New Zealand will play a couple of Tests against England ahead of the final.

Sridharan Sriram played 8 ODIs scoring 81 runs and picked 9 scalps. In 2007, Sridharan Sriram decided to sign with the Indian Cricket League. Although he quit Indian Cricket League in 2009 and accepted an amnesty offer from BCCI to be back into the reckoning for selection at the international level, he never played international cricket again as his last ODI was in 2004 after debuting in 2000. He played 2 IPL games.

Neil Wagner
Neil Wagner (Image Credit: Twitter)
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Gary Stead Confirms Pacer Neil Wagner Will Miss 2nd Test Due To Broken Toes

Gary Stead, New Zealand coach confirmed that star pacer Neil Wagner will miss the second Test against Pakistan at Hagley Oval in Christchurch starting on Sunday due to broken toes.

Neil Wagner braved two broken toes and inspired his team to a memorable victory that would take Kane Williamson’s side to the top of the ICC Test rankings. A Shaheen Afridi yorker hit Neil Wagner on Sunday, but he overcame the injury to bowl in both the innings for New Zealand.

Gary Stead
Gary Stead (Credits: Twitter)

Gary Stead: Neil Wagner Was Amazing As He Braved Injury Concerns

In the 1st Test, New Zealand scored 431 in 1st and 180/5 declared in 2nd innings and dismissed Pakistan for 239 and 271 to win the match by 101 runs. Kane Williamson scored 129 in New Zealand’s 1st innings and was well complemented by Ross Taylor (70), Henry Nicholls (56) and BJ Watling(73).

Pakistan faltered in 1st innings as apart from Mohammed Rizwan (71) and Faheem Ashraf (91) the others didn’t manage double-digit figures. After New Zealand declared at 180/5, Pakistan’s Fawad Alam scored 102 but couldn’t win the match for Pakistan.

“Neil was absolutely outstanding,” Gary Stead told reporters at Christchurch airport on Thursday. “I don’t think there are too many individuals who could do what he did in that test match.”

Kane Williamson
Kane Williamson. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

“Neil hasn’t traveled with us. The injections he was getting (to lessen the pain) were wearing off (quickly) and we can’t let him go through that again.”

Pacer Neil Wagner would be out of action for up to six weeks. Gary Stead said that the Kiwis would likely name his replacement on Friday, adding that they would go “like for like” replacement.

Gary Stead: Fawad Alam And Mohammad Rizwan Neatly Took Match Away From New Zealand’s Grasp

Gary Stead was pleased with New Zealand’s first Test’s performance in both batting and bowling against a tough resilient Pakistan side, who were behind in most sessions for much of the match but were still in with a chance of snatching victory from jaws of defeat in the final session. Fawad Alam and Mohammed Rizwan put up a 165 run 5th wicket partnership after Pakistan were reduced to 75/4.

“That was tough, really hard test cricket and it was good to come out on the right side of it against a tough Pakistan team,” he said.

Fawad Alam
Fawad Alam (Image Credit: Google)

“I thought Mohammad Rizwan and Fawad Alam’s partnership was outstanding … and they nearly took the game away from us. That’s what makes Test cricket what it is,” Gary Stead stated.

Neil Wagner picked four wickets bowling 49 overs averaging 26.25 while Kyle Jamieson picked five wickets averaging 14.

Fawad Alam came back into Pakistan’s test team after a gap of 88 tests and more than 10 years. In the first Test against Kiwis, he scored his first Test hundred after more than 11 years. There was a gap of 4218 days between the two centuries he has scored in his Test career. In July 2009, he became the first Pakistani cricketer to score a Test century on debut away from home.

England sealed an unlikely three-wicket victory against Pakistan in the first Test (AP)
England sealed an unlikely three-wicket victory against Pakistan in the first Test (AP)
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Pakistan And England Players Improve Test Rankings After First Test Against England

Pakistan opener Shan Masood’s knock of 156 has lifted him 14 places to his career-best 19th position in the latest rankings of batsmen by ICC. His solid first-innings ton reflects in ICC Men’s test player rankings which have been updated Sunday after the conclusion of the first test at Manchester.

Crucial second innings knock by England pair Chris Woakes and Jos Buttler also reflected in the rankings and former top-ranked Pakistan spinner, Yasir Shah also updated his position.

Left-hander Shan Masood’s knock of 156 which helped Pakistan to take 107 first-innings lead and lifted him 14 places to his career-best 19th position in the rankings. He is now the second-highest ranked Pakistan Test batsman after Babar Azam who is placed sixth. His previous best was 32 position which was in February in 2020.

 

Shan Masood celebrates his hundred  Getty Images
Shan Masood celebrates his hundred Getty Images

ICC Test Rankings: England And Pakistan Players Advance In ICC Test Rankings

Man of the match, Chris Woakes has leapt 18 places to 78th position after building a 139 run partnership for the sixth wicket with Jos Buttler which guided England a narrow win by three wickets.

Chris Woakes who scored 19 and 84 in the two innings jumped to 7th position among all-rounders while wicketkeeper Jos Buttler’s innings of 38 and 75 saw him rise from 44th to 30th while teammate Ollie Pope has attained career-best 36th position after scoring 62 and 7.

Chris Woakes, Jos Buttler lead England recovery in thriller
Chris Woakes, Jos Buttler lead England recovery in thriller Source: ICC

Pakistan leg spinners Yasir Shah who was a former top-ranked bowler has gained notably by moving up two places to 22nd position after taking eight wickets whereas Shadab Khan has re-entered rankings at career-best 69th position.

ICC Rankings: England Inches Closer To Australia In ICC Test Rankings

England’s Stuart Broad remains in 3rd position after taking 6 wickets and thereby closing the gap with New Zealander Neil Wagner to 7 points while Jofra Archer’s four wickets helped him to advance two places to 37th in the bowlers’ rankings.

In ICC World Test Championship points table, England has moved to 266 points and is within 30 points of second-placed Australia.

England's Stuart Broad. (Photo by Jon Super / POOL / AFP)
England’s Stuart Broad (Photo by Jon Super / POOL / AFP)

India leads the table with 360 points, whereas New Zealand are fourth with 180 points and Pakistan are fifth with 140 points.

Karsan Ghavri
Indian pacers. Credits: Twitter
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Matthew Wade Believes The Indian Bowlers Won’t Be Effective As Neil Wagner

While the cricket fans are eagerly waiting to experience Australia vs India Test series in the upcoming Australian summer, Australian wicketkeeper-batsman Matthew Wade believes that the Indian bowlers can’t be effective like Neil Wagner did in the last year.

In their last Australia tour in the 2018/19 summer, Virat Kohli-led India won country’s first-ever Test and ODI bilateral series in Australia. The strong pace-bowling line-up was one of the major reasons for India’s success in that series.

While Jasprit Bumrah (21 wickets) finished that series as the joint leading wicket-taker along with the Aussie off-spinner Nathan Lyon (21 wickets), another Indian pacer Mohammed Shami finished just behind of them with 16 wickets in that series. Also, the tall pacer Ishant Sharma bagged 11 wickets in the three matches of that series. The Indian spinners were also helpful in that series by picking up wickets in the crucial moments.

Matthew Wade, Indian bowlers
Indian pacers are in good form in recent years (Image Credit: Google)

Many believe that the present Indian bowling squad has a similar strength along with the additional experiences of the past Australia tour. However, the 32-year-old Matthew Wade believes that the Indian bowlers can’t imitate the dominance of the New Zealand left-arm pacer Neil Wagner, which he did during New Zealand tour of Australia 2019/20.

Neil Wagner
New Zealand pacer Neil Wagner bagged 17 wickets during the last tour in Australia (Image Credit: Twitter)

Though New Zealand lost that three-match Test series by the 3-0 margin, the left-arm pacer Neil Wagner was the standout performer for his team as he got 17 wickets in that series. Though Wade didn’t lose his wicket in Wagner’s over during that series, he also admitted that never faced that kind of incredible accurate bouncers.

Matthew Wade, Indian bowlers
Matthew Wade (Photo by Lindsey Parnaby / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. NO ASSOCIATION WITH DIRECT COMPETITOR OF SPONSOR, PARTNER, OR SUPPLIER OF THE ECB (Photo credit should read LINDSEY PARNABY/AFP/Getty Images)

According to cricket.com.au, Wade recently said, “I think we’ll see it a bit (from India) but I don’t think it will be as effective as Wagner. He’s done it for a long time now. To be honest I’ve never faced a bowler who is so accurate at bowling bouncers.” 

India are a fierce team: Matthew Wade

However, Wade has also clarified that Virat Kohli-led Indian team is a fierce side as it is not easy to beat them.

Matthew Wade, Indian bowlers
India won the Test series in Australia by the 2-1 margin in 2018-19 summer (Photo by Matt King – CA/Cricket Australia/Getty Images)

Wade claimed, “They (India) are a fierce team. They’re as hard a team as I’ve ever played in terms of the way they compete. Led by Virat, you can see the way he goes about it on the field, you can see what it means to him and he drives all those guys, they jump on the back of him.”

The four-match Test series between Australia and India will run from 3rd December 2020 to 7th January 2021. This Test series will be the part of the 2019-21 ICC World Test Championship. The second Test of this series, which Adelaide will host between 11th and 15th December 2020, will be the day/night pink-ball Test match.

Aakash Chopra, India-Pakistan
Aakash Chopra (Image Credit: Getty Images)
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Aakash Chopra Reveals His Current Best 15-Member Test Squad

Since the cricket is off due to the coronavirus pandemic, while many people from the cricket family are revealing the best teams in various aspects, former Indian cricketer Aakash Chopra has followed this trend almost regularly. He has already brought many of his best teams, and now he revealed his best 15-member Test squad from the current generation.

Apart from naming three Indian cricketers, Aakash Chopra also named four Australians, three New Zealanders, three English cricketers, one South African and one Pakistan cricketer in his latest squad.

Aakash Chopra, Test squad
Aakash Chopra (Image Credit: Twitter)

Talking about the opening spot, Chopra had the big names like the Sri Lankan captain Dimuth Karunaratne, Indian Rohit Sharma and Australian David Warner. Still, he named New Zealand opener Tom Latham and Indian opener Mayank Agarwal.

Mayank Agarwal, Test squad
Mayank Agarwal (Image Credit: Twitter)

Chopra then named the present no.1-ranked Test batsman Steve Smith for the no.3 position. To take up this position, Smith beat the Indian cricketer Cheteshwar Pujara, Australian cricketer Marnus Labuschagne and New Zealand captain Kane Williamson.

Steve Smith, Test squad
Steve Smith (Image Credit: Getty Images)

Aakash Chopra chose Virat Kohli as the captain of his latest favourite Test squad

Indian captain Virat Kohli, the present no.2-ranked Test batsman, was selected in the no.4 batting position in this list. In this Chopra’s current Test team, Kohli will play the leading role. However, Chopra also added that Williamson could be the favourite candidate to lead this side if he was in this team.

Virat Kohli, Test squad
Virat Kohli (Image Credits: BCCI)

English Test captain Joe Root was chosen for the No. 5 batting position. Chopra couldn’t fit him for the No. 3 or No. 4 batting position due to the bigger names in this list.

Then Chopra named the English pace-bowling all-rounder Ben Stokes. South African cricketer Quinton de Kock will play the wicket-keeper role in this team.

Chopra then named three pacers – Australian Pat Cummins, Indian Jasprit Bumrah and New Zealand left-arm pacer Neil Wagner. While Cummins is currently the top-ranked ICC Test bowler, Wagner is the second-ranked ICC Test bowler. In his current Test XI, Chopra finally named the Australian off-spinner Nathan Lyon.

Jasprit Bumrah, Test squad
Jasprit Bumrah (Photo Credit: Getty Images)

Aakash Chopra’s current Test XI: Tom Latham, Mayank Agarwal, Steve Smith, Virat Kohli (C), Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Quinton de Kock (WK), Pat Cummins, Neil Wagner, Jasprit Bumrah and Nathan Lyon

In his reserve-squad, who can be substituted during a Test match, Chopra named Australian Marnus Labuschagne, Pakistan cricketer Babar Azam, New Zealand wicketkeeper BJ Watling and English pacer Stuart Broad.

Reserves: Marnus Labuschagne, Babar Azam, BJ Watling (WK) and Stuart Broad

Neil Wagner, Virat Kohli, Christchurch Test, New Zealand vs India 2020
Virat Kohli isn't at his best. Credits: Twitter
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Neil Wagner Eyes Virat Kohli’s Wicket in Christchurch Test

Virat Kohli’s performance in the ongoing tour was far from pleasing. The Indian captain managed to score solitary fifty across nine innings, which is a rare failure considering a player of his calibre. The top-order batsman was not up to the mark in the first Test match at Basin Reserve in Wellington.

Kohli has chipped in with low scores of two and 19 in the first and second innings as New Zealand beat India by ten wickets inside four days, to take the lead (1-0) in the two-match Test series.

Now, New Zealand are just one win away from whitewashing the visitors or even a draw will ensure a series win for the hosts.

Virat Kohli, Mike Gatting
Virat Kohli’s poor run of form a huge concern. Image: Getty Images.

The Kiwis are making sure that Kohli’s dry patch continues into the last match of India’s tour too. The second Test is scheduled to be played at Hagley Oval in Christchurch on February 29, Saturday.

Neil Wagner targets Virat Kohli’s wicket in the second Test:

Meanwhile, Neil Wagner, who makes a return to New Zealand squad after missing the opening Test on paternity leave said that he is specifically targeting Kohli’s wicket. The pacer said that he always aims to take wickets of best players while also adding that he has a tactical plan to dismiss Kohli in the second Test.

Neil Wagner
Neil Wagner (Image Credit: Twitter)

“Every team I play against I always try and target and go for their best players, because you know what a big stride it makes within a team when you get their best players out. Drying him up, making sure they don’t score and putting a lot of pressure on him from both ends [is imperative],” Wagner told Stuff.co.nz.

Quite interestingly, the left-arm pacer Wagner has dismissed Kohli thrice in six innings in Test cricket. It should be noted that Wagner came out on top when India locked horns with New Zealand in 2013-14. Wagner was the best bowler for his team in the Auckland Test which New Zealand managed to win by a margin of 40 runs.

“I think it was a stage where I was still trying to find my feet in the team and trying to find a way of getting a role and doing my role in the team. That’s one of the Test matches where it did turn. The way I bowl at the moment, that’s where it started. It was an amazing Test win and something I always look back to and I think it kickstarted my career. Before that I was going through the phase where you have quite a few ups and downs and try to find your feet,” Wagner concluded.

Neil Wagner
Neil Wagner (Image Credit: Twitter)
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New Zealand Vs India 2020: Test Series – Neil Wagner Likely To Miss Wellington Test; Another Player Added To The Squad

Just two days ahead of the beginning of the Test series between New Zealand and India, the Kiwi left-arm pacer Neil Wagner is doubtful for the first Test. The New Zealand Cricket (NZC) has named a cover for him.

India will end the ongoing tour in New Zealand with the two-match Test series, which will begin on 21st February. Basin Reserve (Wellington) will host the first Test of the series and the second game of the series will be played at Hagley Oval (Christchurch). This Test series will be part of the 2019-21 ICC World Test Championship.

On Monday (17th February), the NZC announced a 13-member squad for the forthcoming home Test series against India.

The 33-year-old left-arm pacer Neil Wagner has been initially expected to take part in the training session on Thursday (20th February) morning, just one day ahead of the first Test. However, along with his wife, the Kiwi pacer is awaiting the birth of his first child. So, he hasn’t joined the squad yet.

Neil Wagner, New Zealand
Neil Wagner (Image Credit – Getty Images)

Matt Henry has been included in the Test squad as the cover for Neil Wagner

The board has named the 28-year-old right-arm pacer Matt Henry as the cover for Neil Wagner. While Wagner is a crucial member of the present New Zealand Test side with the experience of 47 Tests, Henry has played 12 Tests. In the last calendar year, Wagner was the most Test wicket-taker for New Zealand (43 wickets).

Matt Henry, New Zealand
Matt Henry (Image Credit: Twitter)

In the recent update, the NZC has confirmed that Neil Wagner will not be joining the national team ahead of the Wellington Test as he will remain with his wife until the birth of their first child. Meanwhile, Matt Henry will join the squad on Wednesday night (19th February).

 

However, in the absence of Neil Wagner, the 25-year-old Kyle Jamieson has the high chance to make his Test debut during the Wellington Test. During the recent three-match home ODI series against India, the right-arm pacer made his international debut and impressed with his performances. In his debutant ODI, Jamieson won the Player of the Match award for his game-changing all-round performances.

New Zealand Test squad for the home series against India (updated): Kane Williamson (c), Ross Taylor, BJ Watling, Tom Blundell, Colin de Grandhomme, Kyle Jamieson, Tom Latham, Daryl Mitchell, Henry Nicholls, Ajaz Patel, Tim Southee, Trent Boult, Neil Wagner, Matt Henry.

James Pattinson
James Pattinson (Image Credit: Google)
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Watch: James Pattinson Loses His Wicket In Weird Manner

In international cricket history, we have seen some awkward incidents, including dismissals, which always surprise us. During the Sydney Test against New Zealand, Australian tail-ender batsman James Pattinson lost his wicket in a weird manner that stunned many cricket fans.

At present, the in-form Australia are busy in the home Test series against the visitors New Zealand. From last Friday (3rd January), Australia and New Zealand are playing the third and final Test of this series at Sydney Cricket Ground (Sydney).

After dominating the day one, the hosts batting line-up guided the team comfortably to the first innings total of 400 runs on the second day of this Test match. But after that, most of the Aussie lower-order batsmen lost their wickets cheaply as their wickets were falling at regular intervals and Australia were all out of 454 runs. While the hosts were once batting on 410/5, they lost their last five wickets in that innings for just 44 runs.

During those non-impressive moments for the hosts, James Pattinson weirdly lost his wicket. The in-form New Zealand left-arm pacer Neil Wagner bowled Pattinson but in a surprising manner. Facing a short delivery, Pattinson decided to duck, but that created chaos in his crease.

James Pattinson
James Pattinson (Image Credit: Google)

After hitting the ball on Pattinson’s shoulder, it hit on his gloves, and then his back of the bat, and finally it dropped on the pitch that soon hit the wicket and took off the bails. The entire weird moment ran so fast that Pattinson failed to react on that appropriately, and ultimately lost his wicket. Before that unlucky dismissal, James Pattinson scored two runs off 20 balls.

Here is the video of James Pattinson’s weird dismissal

Marnus Labuschagne scored a double-century in that innings as he scored 215 runs before Todd Astle caught and bowled him. Steven Smith scored 63 runs in that innings while the opener David Warner also played a good knock of 45 runs. Neil Wagner (3/66) and Colin de Grandhomme (3/78) both Kiwi bowlers took three wickets each in that innings.

Watch: James Pattinson Loses His Wicket In Weird Manner 1
Marnus Labuschagne (Image Credit: Google)

At the stumps on day two of this Test match, New Zealand were batting on 63/0. Both their openers, captain Tom Latham (26) and Tom Blundell (34) remained not out on that day.

However, Australia have already secured this Test series as they are leading it by 2-0 before this final Test of this series.

Neil Wagner
Neil Wagner (Image Credit: Twitter)
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Latest ICC Test Players’ Rankings: Neil Wagner Moves Up To The Second Position In Bowling Rankings

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has released the final Test players’ rankings of the year 2019. While Marnus Labuschagne and David Warner have improved their positions in the Test batting rankings, New Zealand pacer Neil Wagner has moved to the second position in the Test bowling rankings.

On Monday (30th December), the ICC has released the latest Test players’ rankings. Indian captain Virat Kohli is leading the table of Test batting rankings with 928 rating points. Australian star Steven Smith has maintained the second position in the Test batting rankings with 911 rating points. New Zealand captain Kane Williamson is in the third position in this ranking-table with 822 points.

rankings
Steven Smith and Virat Kohli (Image Credit: Google)

Special movements in the ICC Test batting rankings

Both the in-form Aussie batsmen Marnus Labuschagne and David Warner have climbed up one spot each in the ICC Test batting rankings. While Labuschagne is standing in the fourth position, Warner is in the joint seventh spot along with the Indian Test middle-order batsman Ajinkya Rahane. As Labuschagne has moved up, Indian cricketer Cheteshwar Pujara has slipped down to the fifth position in the ICC Test batting rankings.

rankings
Marnus Labuschagne and David Warner (Image Credit: Google)

Also, the South African wicketkeeper-batsman Quinton de Kock, who scored 95 and 34 runs against England during the recently concluded Centurion Test and also won the Player of the Match award, has entered to the top 10 positions in the ICC Test batting rankings. Jumping eight spots, Quinton de Kock is now holding the 10th position in the batting rankings.

Quinton de Kock, rankings
Quinton de Kock (Image Credit: Twitter)

ICC Test bowling rankings

On the other hands, the Australian pacer Pat Cummins has finished this year on the top of the ICC Test bowling rankings. Meanwhile, the Kiwi left-arm pacer Neil Wagner has achieved his best-ever ICC Test bowling rankings after finishing this year in the second position (+1) with 859 rating points. In the Boxing Day Test against the hosts Australia at Melbourne, Wagner scalped seven wickets (4/83 & 3/50) and also became the second-fastest New Zealand bowler to complete 200 Test wickets.

rankings
Neil Wagner (Image Credit: Google)

South African fast bowler Kagiso Rabada has slipped down to the third position (-1) despite taking seven wickets (3/68 & 4/103) in the Centurion Test victory against England. Another Proteas pacer Vernon Philander, who is playing his last Test series, has climbed up three spots to take the fifth position in the ICC Test bowling rankings after bowling superbly during England’s first innings of the Centurion Test (4/16 & 0/35).

Australian left-arm pacer Mitchell Starc, who bagged two wickets in the Melbourne Test against New Zealand, has dropped down to the seventh spot in the Test bowling rankings.

Latest ICC Test Players' Rankings: Neil Wagner Moves Up To The Second Position In Bowling Rankings 2
Image Credit: ICC
Tim Paine. Credits: Getty Images
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Tim Paine Blasts DRS Technology After Controversial Dismissal

Australian skipper Tim Paine was not at all impressed with the Decision Review System technology after he was given out by the third umpire. Paine was struck on the pads when Neil Wagner bowled from around the wicket. The right-hander was given not out by the on-field umpire but the New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson decided to send the decision to the third umpire.

On replays, it showed the ball was hitting the stumps and the on-field umpire had to reverse his decision. However, Paine was not impressed as he thought that it must have been going over the stumps as the ball had pitched before the good length area. Paine was dismissed after scoring a fine knock of 79 runs – which is his best score as the Australian captain. Thus, the right-hander will need to wait for his maiden Test century.

Tim Paine Blasts DRS Technology After Controversial Dismissal 3
Travis Head and Tim Paine. Credits: Twitter

Paine shares his thoughts on the DRS.

When asked about his dismissal after the end of the day’s play, Paine said, “Don’t start. I thought from the length that it pitched, and the bloke bowling around the wicket, it’s pretty difficult to hit you in line, and hit the stumps,” he said of the delivery.

On the other hand, Tim Paine took a dig at Ross Taylor when he was hit in front of the wickets later in the day by James Pattinson. Taylor was given out by the umpire but the decision was reversed when the New Zealander went for the review.

Tim Paine
Tim Paine. Credits: Twitter

“And then you get one late tonight which, the guy’s stuck on the crease, he’s hit really full and it’s going over, so it’s disappointing and it makes me angry,” said Paine.

“I’ve got a few doubts, no doubt about that,” he added of the technology’s accuracy.

“I won’t go into it too far because I’ll get in trouble but I’m just seeing time and time again, what I see to the naked eye, or watching it on television in real-time, and then what it comes up is sometimes a little bit off the mark.”

This is not the first time that DRS has come under the scanner. There have been many occasions when the authenticity of the technology has been questioned by the players.