Kusal Perera‘s heroics in the Durban Test have propelled him 58 places to a career-best 40th position on the ICC Rankings for Test batsmen. Australia fast bowler Pat Cummins, meanwhile, has overtaken Kagiso Rabada to claim the No. 1 spot on the Test bowlers’ rankings.
Perera’s astonishing ascent on the list comes on the back of his match-winning 153 not-out in the first Test against South Africa that Sri Lanka won by one-wicket on Saturday. Having struck 51 in the first innings, Perera walked in to bat for his second dig when Sri Lanka were 52 for 3. He added 96 with the No. 7 Dhananjaya de Silva before riding on an unbroken 78-run last wicket stand with Vishwa Fernando to help Sri Lanka chase down 304.
As for Cummins, who became the first Australian since Glenn McGrath in February 2006 to top the Test bowlers’ list, the rise to the top coincided with Rabada claiming only three wickets in the Durban Test. Earlier in the week, Cummins was named the Allan Border medalist at the Australian Cricket Awards in Melbourne to confirm him as the standout performer in a tough and controversial year for the men’s game.
Meanwhile, South Africa captain Faf du Plessis has broken into the top 10 for the first time in his 57-match Test career. Du Plessis moved up seven spots on the back of scores of 35 and 90 to claim the joint-10th position along with Sri Lanka captain Dimuth Karunaratne.
Leading the pair by two spots, at No. 8, is du Plessis’ compatriot Quinton de Kock, who had reached his career-best ranking of No. 6 two years ago. Fast bowler Duanne Olivier advanced three positions to reach his career-best No. 22.