The hosts of ICC World Cup 2016, India will launch their campaign at the mega event ranked on top in the T20 team rankings. “India will enter the home tournament as the number-one ranked side in the world,” ICC confirmed in a media release on Monday.
Concluding the Asia Cup final with his trademark six, Mahendra Singh Dhoni clinched the golden trophy on Sunday and lifted the men-in-blue to the top rank. The triumph at the T20 tournament boosted confidence for India to seal the World T20 title.
In a surprising turn of events, South Africa struggled to retain its top spot on Sunday. With the victory over the Proteas, Australia have levelled the 3-match series (1-1). Even though one match is remaining, South Africa’s victory will not make a major difference to their standings.
Following India, West Indies are currently placed 2nd. South Africa will look to surpass the Windies in the series decider against Australia on 9th March. India will open their World Cup campaign on 15th March, playing against New Zealand at Nagpur. The Kiwis are on the 4th spot in rankings, from which they may fall if Australia win the 3rd T20I.
In the batsman rankings’ chart, Australia’s Aaron Finch holds the top place and Indian vice-captain Virat Kohli in on a close 2nd. No other Indian batsman could make into top 10, however, with consistent performances at Asia Cup, Indian opener Rohit Sharma came on 11th spot.
Bowlers’ list of ICC rankings, too missed an Indian name on the top as Sunil Narine retained his top spot. Struggling on pace-friendly pitches in Bangladesh, India’s star spinner Ravichandran Ashwin failed to make it to the top and remained on 2nd position.