World champion Australia extends lead on ODI ranking, Pakistan drops to 9th position
* West Indies, Bangladesh and Pakistan in a close race to qualify for the ICC Champions Trophy 2017
* ICC World Twenty20 winner Sri Lanka maintains top spot in T20 table
DUBAI – World Cup winner Australia has doubled its lead over second-ranked India on the ICC ODI Team Rankings from six to 12 points following the annual update, according to a media release by the International Cricket Council (ICC).
West Indies, Bangladesh and Pakistan are now locked in a tight struggle for the remaining two slots in the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 whose cut-off date is September 30, 2015.
The ICC Champions Trophy 2017 will be played from June 1 to 19 in England and Wales, and the host country (England), plus the next seven highest-ranked ODI sides will participate in the event.
The updated rankings now see a battle between the West Indies (seventh, 88 points), Bangladesh (eighth, 88 points) and Pakistan (ninth, 87 points). The three sides are separated by one point and will be vying for the last two places in the ICC Champions Trophy 2017, adding significant interest to their ODIs in the lead up to the cut-off date.
The annual ODI update has also seen New Zealand and England head in opposite directions.
ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 runner-up New Zealand has made the biggest move, jumping eight points to be third-ranked ahead of South Africa. In contrast, England has had the biggest fall as it has surrendered seven points, dropping to sixth-ranked, 12 points behind fifth-ranked Sri Lanka.
In the T20 update, ICC World Twenty20 champion Sri Lanka has extended its lead over second-ranked India to 11 points. The top three positions in the updated T20I table are unchanged while the West Indies has gained two places to rise to fourth, pushing Pakistan into fifth spot. South Africa has also slipped two places to seventh, allowing New Zealand to move up one place to sixth.
Australia and West Indies have gained five points each while Netherlands has conceded eight, Scotland seven and South Africa six points.
The annual Test Championship update will be released after the completion of West Indies versus England and Bangladesh versus Pakistan series.