CAPE TOWN – We all think so already, and now it’s official – Kagiso Rabada is the best bowler in the world!
The International Cricket Council announced their latest rankings on Tuesday, and following Rabada’s haul of 4/39 against England on Monday, he has moved up four places to No 1 on the ODI bowlers’ list.
The 22-year-old Rabada becomes the youngest No 1-ranked bowler since Pakistan off-spinner Saqlain Mushtaq in 1998, and he replaces another South African star in leg-spinner Imran Tahir at the top, with the latter in second.
Rabada ended with seven wickets in the three-match series against England, which ended 2-1 in favour of the hosts.
But the Proteas hit back with a convincing seven-wicket victory at Lord’s on Monday to regain some confidence ahead of their Champions Trophy opener against Sri Lanka at The Oval on Saturday (11.30am SA time start).
Captain AB de Villiers remains the No 1-ranked batsman in ODI cricket, followed by Australian David Warner and Indian captain Virat Kohli.
Proteas wicket-keeper Quinton de Kock is at No 4, with Faf du Plessis sixth and Hashim Amla at No 10.
South Africa are also on top of the team rankings, but that won’t count for anything at the Champions Trophy, where they will hope to claim their first piece of ICC silverware since the 1998 edition of the tournament, when it was still known as the ICC Knock-Out Trophy.