Virat Kohli’s rich vein of form has been rewarded by a rank at the very top of the ICC ODI rankings for batsman as the Indian superstar replaced prolific South African batsman Hashim Amla to take the number 1 spot in the latest list. At the start of the current 7 game one day international series against Australia , Kohli was at number 3 but his mind blowing performance in the series gave him enough points to leap frog Amla and get to the coveted top spot.
In total, Kohli scored an aggregate of 344 runs in the recently concluded ODI series which included match winning centuries, one of which was in fact the fastest ever by an Indian and in addition to that, he also recorded an average of 114. 66. His exploits in the series earned him a total of 38 points and hence it is no wonder that he is now at the top of the tree, however, it must also be said that Hashim Amla has had to face a far more skilful bowling attack in the ODI series going on in Sharjah against Pakistan. He hasn’t scored many runs and hence Kohli’s extraordinary show in this series has made him the top ranked ODI batsman in the world at the moment.
So, far only two Indians have ever been ranked number 1 in the official ICC ODI rankings – the Little Master Sachin Tendulkar of course and the Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni. The fact that Virat has reached this landmark at the age of 25 further reinforces the rationale behind why everyone now thinks of him as a worthy successor of Sachin Tendulkar in the Indian batting line up. Additionally, it needs to be pointed out however, that the Amla and Kohli will come face to face in the ODIs that would be played in South Africa later this year and hence that will add a little more spice to the proceedings. If either of the two batsmen has a significantly better series than the other then either it will be a case of Kohli consolidating his position or of Amla regaining his top spot in his own backyard. However, it is highly unlikely that both these batsmen, who belong to the top most drawer could have a particularly series and the fact that Amla opens the innings for South Africa gives him more overs to score his runs from.
As far as the latest development is concerned, it shows that the ICC ODI Rankings are compiled with the help of a rational points system that certainly rewards cricketers who have performed well and in this regard the system must be lauded as well. Last but now the least, Ravindra Jadeja has also jumped to 3rd spot in the bowlers’ rankings and it certainly bodes well for India’s ODI fortunes that two of its key players are now ranked in the upper tier of the global game.