New Zealand have become the world’s top-ranked Test team in the world for the first time in their history following their crushing innings win over Pakistan on Wednesday. The Kane Williamson-led outfit produced an all-round performance to beat the tourists by an innings and 176 runs in Christchurch.Also Read - Here is How BCCI President, Sourav Ganguly Convinced Rahul Dravid For Team India Role
New Zealand had taken a lead of 362 runs after captain Williamson’s fourth Test double century that helped them declare at a mammoth 659/6 on the fourth day of the second Test. In reply to that, Pakistan were bowled out for 186 in their second dig with fast bowler Kyle Jamieson taking 6/48. Also Read - IND vs NZ: Axar Patel Reflects on Brilliant Performance, Says This Has Been My Dream Year
With the win, the hosts completed a 2-0 clean sweep of Pakistan and thus rose to the top of the ranking, becoming the seventh outfit in the last decade to do so. Also Read - IND vs NZ: Ravichandran Ashwin Scalps 50 Wickets in Calendar Year in Tests; Only Indian Bowler to Achieve it on Most Number of Occasions
“It’s an incredible couple of games,” Williamson said after the match. “Even though the result on paper was in our favour, but Pakistan is a quality side. We worked hard and got lucky with a few moments.”
“It was a real battle for a long time. The runs were tough to come by as Pakistan bowled great lines. The openers gave us a great start and Nicholls batted with a calf muscle injury and it was an incredible effort. Really pleasing performance, nice to finish the Test summer on a high,” he added.
He was also full of praise for Jamieson who finished with 11 wickets from the Test. “Kyle is a special cricketer. He’s gone a long way to moving this team forward and complementing the bowling attack,” the 30-year-old said.
New Zealand now have 118 points – two more than Australia at the second spot and four clear of third-ranked India.
England (106) and South Africa (96) complete the top-five.
Williamson, who became the fastest Kiwi batsman to 7,000 Test runs, has consolidated his position at the top of the rankings as well. He has struck two double-centuries and a century in his last three Tests.