Williamson, Irfan achieve career-best ODI rankings

KARACHI: New Zeala­nd’s ODI captain Kane William­son and Pakistan paceman Mohammad Irfan have achieved career-best rankings in ODIs after their recent ODI series in the UAE.

Williamson, who led New Zealand in the absence of Brendon McCullum, finished the series as the top-scorer with 346 runs and has been rewarded with a jump of three places in ICC player rankings for ODI batsmen.

This has put Williamson in ninth place, the highest he has been since making his ODI debut in August 2010.

Williamson also became the top-ranked batsman from his side, leapfrogging Ross Taylor, who has stayed in 11th position.

Meanwhile, Irfan is the other player who has achie­ved a career-best ranking. The left-armer took nine wic­kets in the UAE series against Black Caps, helping him rise 11 places to 16th in player rankings for ODI bowlers.

New Zealand’s Matt Henry was the leading wicket-taker in the series with 13 wickets and, with those returns, he has rocketed 78 places to sit just outside the top 50.

Shahid Afridi is the biggest mover in player rankings for ODI all-rounders. The veteran of 389 ODIs backed up his eight wickets in the series with 205 runs, which has put him in 18th position in the bowling table (up by 19 places) and 44th position in the batting chart (up by 13 places), respectively.

When these performances are taken together, they give Afridi a lift of four places in the all-rounders’ category and a number-five ranking.

Meanwhile, in the team rankings, New Zealand’s 3-2 series victory has allowed them to join Pakistan at 97 ratings points. However, when the ratings are calculated beyond the decimal point, then New Zealand are ranked above Pakistan and, as such, this means that the two sides have swapped places on the table.

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