Latest ICC T20I Rankings: India gain rating point, move to third spot
What's the story?
Following their 2-1 series victory against South Africa, India have gained one rating point and moved to third position in the latest ICC T20I rankings. The 'Men in Blue' are now at 122 rating points and trail Pakistan as well as Australia by four rating points.
Although they both have 126 rating points, Pakistan are ahead of second placed Australia when the rankings are calculated beyond decimal points. A slew of victories, culminating in the Trans-Tasman T20 title, helped the Aussies vault to 125.65 points. However, Sarfraz Ahmed's team still hold the top spot with 125.84 points.
Meanwhile, South Africa have slipped one position to end up on seventh spot in the T20I table. The 1-2 series defeat at the hands of the Indian team resulted in the Proteas losing one rating point.
Before the series began, India had possessed 121 rating points. If they were to come within one point of the top ranked Pakistan side, Virat Kohli's team had found themselves needing to win all three matches in the T20I leg of their South African safari.
The heart of the matter
India began the 3-match T20I series by winning by a margin of 28 runs in the opening game at Johannesburg. But they suffered a six-wicket defeat in the second encounter as the Proteas successfully completed a stiff run-chase under wet conditions.
In the deciding game of the T20I series, India suffered an early blow as skipper Virat Kohli had to miss out due a stiff back. Rohit Sharma filled the captaincy void and rallied the visitors to defend 172 on a two-paced Cape Town track. A thrilling seven-run victory not only gave India their second trophy of the tour but also helped them move from 120 to 122 rating points.
Latest ICC T20I Rankings
(*Note: T20I rankings table is accurate as of 25th February, 2018)
India's next assignment will see them lock horns with the likes of Sri Lanka and Bangladesh for the 2018 Nidahas Trophy. They begin their campaign in the T20I tri-series by taking on the hosts on March 6 at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo.
Even if they go on to embark on an undefeated campaign in the tri-series (four matches plus the final), India still cannot surge ahead of Pakistan and Australia in the next month.
To go alongside their number one position in both Tests and ODIs, occupying the third spot in T20Is makes India the only team to be within the top three in all three formats of the game. Their collection of more than 120 rating points in all three formats is a glowing measure of the team's impressive consistency in recent times.