Former India captain Virat Kohli's strong performance in the first Test against South Africa has helped him return to the top of the International Cricket Council (ICC) rankings in the longest format of the game. Kohli had scored 38 and 76 in Centurion, the latter of the two scores coming in an innings in which India scored 131 runs.
Kohli fell out of the top 10 in 2022. He has now moved up four places to ninth place. However, he is 103 rating points away from leader Kane Williamson, with Joe Root and Steve Smith in second and third place respectively.
India captain Rohit Sharma, meanwhile, fell to 14th place after scoring just five runs in the first innings and a duck in the second. KL Rahul scored a century in the first innings of a match that marked his first wicket as a wicketkeeper-batter. He moved up 11 places to 51st.
Among the bowlers, Ravichandran Ashwin remained at the top despite managing one for 41 in Centurion, while Ravindra Jadeja and Jasprit Bumrah were at fourth and fifth place respectively. Jadeja continued to top the list of all-rounders, followed by Ashwin in second place, while Shardul Thakur dropped to 34th. India are at the top of the team standings with 118 points, ahead of Australia and England.
Dean Elgar back in the top 20
South African Dean Elgar, who is stepping in as captain and will retire from Test cricket, climbed 19 places to 17th. Elgar scored a confident 185 off 287 balls to take the wind out of India's sails in Centurion. It was his first century on his home ground and it means he will most likely end his Test career in the top 20 of the rankings.
Over in Australia, the Boxing Day Test meeting with Pakistan saw minor movement on the batting front, with Mitchell Marsh's hustle leading to the most notable change, moving from 16th to 52nd (504). Mohammad Rizwan enjoyed a four-place jump following his aggressive knock, while Travis Head retained his top-10 spot with a rating of 754 despite a quiet Boxing Day test and a four-place drop.
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