Jimmy and Jonny jump up ICC rankings

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England fast bowler James Anderson returned to the top three of the ICC rankings for Test bowlers after a stellar performance in the Headingley Test against Sri Lanka, which the home side won by an innings and 88 runs to go one-up in the three-Test series.

The 33-year-old Lancastrian returned figures of five for 16 and five for 29, his first 10-wicket haul at Headingley and third in 114 Tests, to leapfrog Yasir Shah of Pakistan and South Africa’s Dale Steyn into third place.

Anderson earned 49 points for his performance, which put him on a career-high 854 points. Anderson trails his new-ball partner and number-one ranked Stuart Broad by 18 points.

Broad took five wickets in the Test and retained his one-point lead over India’s off-spinner Ravichandaran Ashwin.  

England’s Moeen Ali moved up one place to 25th, Sri Lanka’s Shaminda Eranga returned to the 35th spot, Dushmantha Chameera gained three places and is now in 41st spot, and Dasun Shanaka, who took three for 36 on his Test debut, entered in 86th place.

In the rankings for Test batsmen, England’s man of the match Jonny Bairstow achieved a career-best ranking.

The wicketkeeper-batsman scored 140 and featured in a 141-run sixth wicket partnership with opener Alex Hales, which lifted England from 83 for five to 298.

For this performance, Bairstow was rewarded with 84 points, which lifted the 26-year-old Yorkshireman 14 places to 22nd spot in the latest rankings.

Bairstow has Pakistan’s Azhar Ali firmly within his sights as he aims to break into the top 20 for the first time in his career. He trails the Pakistan top-order batsman by 27 points.

Hales, who scored 86, rocketed 38 places to 81st, while Kusal Mendis (60th, up by 13) and Lahiru Thirimanne (67th, up by nine) were the other batsmen to make upward movements.

Joe Root retained his second place behind Australia captain Steve Smith, but the pre-Test 36-point gap has now opened to 49 points after Root failed to score any runs. He is just eight points ahead of New Zealand captain Kane Williamson.

Rival captains Angelo Mathews and Alastair Cook both failed to hold on to their places and slipped one position each to ninth and 15th respectively.

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