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Monday August 08, 2022

ICC T20 rankings: Can Suryakumar Yadav dethrone Babar Azam as top batter?

Suryakumar Yadav has surpassed Mohamamd Rizwaz to claim second spot

By Web Desk
August 03, 2022
Pakistan skipper Babar Azam and Indian star Suryakumar Yadav. -File photo
Pakistan skipper Babar Azam and Indian star Suryakumar Yadav. -File photo

After months on top of the ICC T20 rankings, Pakistan skipper Babar Azam’s position as the best batter is in danger as India’s Suryakumar Yadav moved within striking distance of the Pakistani captain.

Babar is currently on top with 818 points while the Indian batter, who made his international debut at the start of last year, is just two points away to replace him.

Yadav has been in fine form for India during their ongoing T20I series against West Indies and the 31-year-old’s latest exploits with the bat have seen him rewarded on the latest rankings update.

According to the latest ICC rankings, Yadav has surged up three spots to second overall on the ICC T20I list for batters, with Babar now just two rating points ahead of the in-form right-hander.

Yadav’s recent rise has come on the back of a century against England in Nottingham last month and a stylish half-century against West Indies on Tuesday.

Promoted up the order to open the batting alongside skipper Rohit Sharma for the first time during this tour of the Caribbean, Yadav has been a shining light for India and his 111 runs at a strike rate in excess of 168 through the first three matches of the series has helped the Asian country claim a 2-1 series lead.

It's also boosted Yadav's chances of making the trip to Australia for the ICC T20 World Cup later this year and if he can overtake Babar and claim the No 1 T20I ranking then his case will almost be insurmountable.

And Yadav is likely to get the chance to overtake Babar, who regained number one position on November 3 2021,  at the head of proceedings over the coming week, with India still having two more games against West Indies remaining in their five-match series.

Should Yadav score well in those matches then he may usurp Babar as the No 1 ranked batter, given Pakistan's next T20I contest is at the end of the month against India at the Asia Cup.

Pakistan veteran Mohammad Rizwan (third), South Africa's Aiden Markram (fourth) and England left-hander Dawid Malan (fifth) all dropped a place due to Yadav's jump.