Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 February 2020

Pakistan in danger of losing No1 T20 ranking in February

England can rise to top spot if they sweep South Africa T20 series

Pakistan held on to their No1 ranking in T20 cricket following their series sweep against Bangladesh at home but there is every chance they could lose the top spot as early as next month.

The hosts defeated Bangladesh 2-0 with the third match of the series washed out in Lahore, which meant they remained on top of the rankings table with 270 points, just ahead of Australia in 269 and England on 265.

However, a poor 12 months mean that Pakistan can soon slip down the rankings table. They lost eight out of their last nine completed T20s before the Bangladesh series. And they might have to pay a big price for their horror 2019.

England face South Africa in a three-match T20 series after their ODI clash that begins on February 4. If the visitors manage to sweep South Africa 3-0, which is a distinct possibility after the one-sided Test series, England will rise to 271 points and overtake Babar Azam's Pakistan as the top-ranked T20 team, according to the International Cricket Council's rankings predictor.

It would be a deserving reward for England who have become the most dynamic white-ball team in the game.

Since this is the year of the T20 World Cup in Australia, the loss of No1 ranking could be a psychological blow for a Pakistan team that is in the rebuilding phase under Misbah-ul-Haq and has endured a tough time in the Test format.

Updated: January 28, 2020 06:00 PM

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