Mohali: India may have risen to the top spot in the latest ICC rankings for one-day international (ODI) teams with a crushing win over England in Ranchi on Saturday, but such is the fickle nature of the rating that the hosts face a must-win scenario on Wednesday to stay No 1.
On 119 points to England’s 118, MS Dhoni’s team has to win the fourth ODI in Mohali to remain on top of the pile. If it loses, England will be back on top. South Africa are third with 116 points while Sri Lanka and Australia are tied at 111 points. South Africa take on New Zealand at Kimberley on Tuesday, a match that could impact movement in the top three as well.
India returned to No 1 in the rankings following their seven-wicket win over England and South Africa’s one-wicket defeat to New Zealand at Paarl. India previously occupied the spot in September 2009 after beating Sri Lanka at the Premadasa Stadium. However, that reign did not last even 24 hours.
If England win the fourth match, they will rise to the top of the ICC rankings; South Africa too have a chance to close in with two ODIs remaining against New Zealand.
This time around, India again face stiff competition to remain No 1. South Africa have a third ODI against New Zealand on January 25, followed by a series at home against Pakistan. After the England series finishes on Sunday, India do not have any ODIs scheduled until the ICC Champions Trophy in June-July.