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Shaheen Afridi becomes No. 1 ODI bowler, Babar Azam retains top spot

Shaheen Afridi becomes No. 1 ODI bowler, Babar Azam retains top spot

Tooba Shakir 7 months ago 0 0

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In-form pacer Shaheen Afridi can now lay claim to be the best ODI bowler in the world after the Pakistan spearhead capped off an impressive start to the ongoing ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup by rising to the No.1 ranking on the latest ODI Bowling Rankings.

Afridi has been in sensational touch for Pakistan at the Cricket World Cup and is currently the joint leading wicket-taker for the tournament alongside Australia spinner Adam Zampa, with the duo having taken 16 scalps apiece.

The tall left-armer took another three wickets during Pakistan’s emphatic triumph over Bangladesh in Kolkata on Tuesday to keep his side’s semi-final hopes alive, and it also helped catapult the 23-year-old past nine of his contemporaries to claim the mantle as the No.1 ranked ODI bowler.

Australia’s Josh Hazlewood (second), India’s Mohammed Siraj (third) and South Africa’s Keshav Maharaj (fourth) all lose one place courtesy of Afridi’s nine-spot jump, with spin duo Kuldeep Yadav (seventh) and Mujeeb Ur Rahman (eighth) both gaining two places inside the top 10.

It is the first time that Afridi has held the No.1 ranking in any format and means Pakistan players simultaneously cling on to the top spot in two ODI categories as skipper Babar Azam maintains his narrow lead at the head of the corresponding batting list.

But Babar’s lead at the top of the ODI batter rankings is down to just two rating points, with the Pakistan captain almost paying the price for an innings of just nine runs against Bangladesh.

The right-hander has a total of 216 runs from seven innings at the World Cup and his closest challenger in India’s Shubman Gill has not yet been able to capitalise with just 104 runs from four knocks.

The challengers continue to close in on the top pair, with experienced Australia opener David Warner rising one place to fourth on the back of his 413 runs at the World Cup while India skipper Rohit Sharma improves three spots to fifth following his 398 runs for the tournament.

Scott Edwards is another eye-catching mover on the list for ODI batters, with the Netherlands captain catapulting up 11 places to equal 16th after 204 runs from six innings at the World Cup.

Bangladesh skipper Shakib Al Hasan maintains his lead at the top of the rankings for ODI all-rounders, with South Africa left-armer Marco Jansen the big mover up two spots to ninth and New Zealand youngster Rachin Ravindra climbing 14 spots to 17th.