Marnus Labuschagne and Babar Azam have risen to the No. 1 spot in the Test and T20I rankings for Test and T20I batters respectively following impressive performance in the most recent engagements. For Labuschagne, it’s the first time at the top spot, while for Babar, it’s a return to the position he had slipped down from only last week.
Labuschagne has had a purple patch in Test cricket since coming on as a concussion substitute for Steven Smith in the Ashes Test at Lord’s in 2019 and currently averages 62.14 from 20 Tests. In the ongoing Ashes series at home, he has scored 74 and 0* in Brisbane and 103 and 51 in Adelaide with Australia taking a 2-0 lead over England.
Labuschagne had started the series at No. 4 on the batting chart, but those runs have now given him a career-high 912 rating points, taking him past Joe Root, who has dropped to second spot despite being in decent form – he has returns of 0, 89, 62 and 24 in the series so far. Smith, Kane Williamson and Rohit Sharma complete the top five.
Babar, meanwhile, had slipped from the perch among T20I batters after scoring 0 and 7 in the first two T20Is against West Indies at home, but a 53-ball 79 in the final game, which helped Pakistan seal a 3-0 series sweep, has taken him back to the top, tied on points with Dawid Malan. Just below them is Babar’s opening partner Mohammad Rizwan, whose spectacular run through the year was capped by a match-winning 45-ball 87 in that final game against West Indies in Karachi.
Those changes at the top have meant a slide to No. 4 for Aiden Markram, while KL Rahul has held on to his spot at fifth place.
Back to the Ashes, and Mitchell Starc has broken into the top ten – at ninth place – for Test bowlers after his match haul of 6 for 80 in the second Test against England, which included a four-for in the first innings. Pat Cummins continues to lead the table, followed by R Ashwin, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Tim Southee and Josh Hazlewood.
Both Starc and Root also made gains in the Test allrounders’ rankings. Starc hit 39* and 19 in the Adelaide Test, and the runs coupled with the six wickets took him up from No. 7 to No. 6 on that list. Jason Holder, R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Shakib Al Hasan and Ben Stokes are above him. Meanwhile, Root’s three wickets in Adelaide, to go with the 86 runs, took him to No. 10, a gain of two spots.