Virat Kohli (L) and Babar Azam. File
Pakistan skipper Babar Azam is now officially the top-ranked T20 batter in the world for the longest period of time, surpassing Virat Kohli's tenure, after he maintained his spot at the head of proceedings in the latest ICC T20 batting rankings released on Wednesday.
India cricketer Kohli was the No.1 ranked T20 batter for a total of 1,013 days during his reign last decade, but Azam has now surpassed this number following his long-standing stay at the top.
The Pakistan skipper is currently rated as the No.1 batter in T20Is and ODIs and recently suggested he was keen to try and claim top billing in all three formats of the game.
There was little change within the latest T20I rankings released on Wednesday, with India left-hander Ishan Kishan dropping one place inside the top-10 to seventh on the list for batters.
Ireland's young batter Harry Tector moved up a 55 places to 66th following his impressive series with the bat against India, while Deepak Hooda jumped 414 spots to equal 104th overall.
While former England Test skipper Joe Root hangs on to his narrow lead as the top-ranked Test batter, there is big movement behind him following the completion of England's three-Test home series against New Zealand.
Player of the Series Daryl Mitchell of New Zealand rose four places to 12th on the latest batter rankings, while fellow Kiwi Tom Blundell jumped 11 spots to 20th.
As per innings taken to reach 10,000 runs, Babar is fifth fastest batter to reach the mark in 228 innings after Richards (206 innings), Amla (217 innings), Lara (220 innings) and Root (222 innings).
"Pakistan captain Azam has ended Kohli's long reign at the top of the ICC Men's ODI player rankings," the ICC said in a statement. The 26-year-old becomes the fourth Pakistani batsmen to get the top spot in ODIs and the first since Mohammad Yousuf in 2003.
A resounding win for Pakistan and a very special day for skipper Babar Azam (“Babar masterclass powers Pakistan to 9-wicket win over South Africa in high-scoring third T20”, April 15, Gulf Today). His quick-fire 122 from 59 balls in the third T20 match at
Williams's farewell on-court interview was threaded with emotion. "I love playing here, I've always loved playing here," she said, choking up as fans who cheered her throughout the match called out their appreciation.
Currently, Babar is placed at the top with 818 rating points, however, India's Suryakumar Yadav is not far behind as he has 805 rating points. Last week, he stood at 816 points, just two points shy of Babar.
The tournament will be held over the weekend of Feb.18-19, 2023 at Zayed City Sports Stadium, an iconic landmark in Abu Dhabi and the largest multi-purpose sports venue in the UAE.