JOHANNESBURG — South Africa’s leading batsmen have climbed the latest International Cricket Council rankings released yesterday.
Hashim Amla, who became the first Proteas player to score a triple century in South Africa’s thumping victory over England in the first Test at The Oval last week, rose three positions to third with a career-best rating.
Jacques Kallis, who contributed an unbeaten century, also improved his ranking, climbing two positions to second. Only Sri Lanka’s Kumar Sangakkara is ranked higher.
Kallis also reclaimed top spot among all-rounders, rising above former number one Shakib al Hasan of Bangladesh.
Middle-order batsman AB de Villiers, who did not bat at The Oval, dropped two positions to fifth after he was overtaken by his countrymen, while skipper Graeme Smith, who made a century in his 100th Test, rose four positions to sixth.
Meanwhile, Dale Steyn, who bagged seven wickets at The Oval, stretched the gap over Pakistan’s Saeed Ajmal at the top of the Test rankings for bowlers.
Fellow speedster Morne Morkel climbed four spots to sixth — tied with Australia’s Ben Hilfenhaus — and Vernon Philander rose one place to fourth.
The Proteas face Worcestershire in a two-day tour match starting tomorrow. The second Test against England, at Headingley, starts on August 2.