Australia’s lead at the top of the International Cricket Council Test team rankings has increased following today’s annual update. Steve Smith’s men are now six points clear of second-placed India, with Pakistan just one point back in third.
The ranking system works on a four year cycle, with today’s update meaning results in 2012-13 are no longer included in calculating the Test rankings.
The annual Test update hurt South Africa the most, who lost 17 rankings points and dropped three places from third to sixth.
The Proteas victories over Australia, England, New Zealand and Pakistan in 2012-13 no longer count, and with the team rebuilding under new captain AB de Villiers, it is a long road back for the former No.1 Test nation.
It ended a flawless Test summer for the Australians and skipper Smith, who is yet to taste defeat in the five-day format at the helm.
“When you are No.1 in the world every team you play against is out for you, they are hunting for you,” Smith said in February.
“It takes a lot of hard work to stay at No.1. “If it does happen ... we’ve got a pretty tough series in a couple of months’ time in Sri Lanka.”