India’s number one spot in the ICC rankings would be on the line when Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s men square off against Australia in a seven-match ODI series starting in Pune on Sunday.
“Australia faces a tough task in unseating India as the number-one ranked side on the Reliance ICC ODI Team Rankings Table, when the top two ranked sides meet in the seven-match ODI series starting in Pune on 13 October,” the ICC said in a statement.
India starts the series as the number-one ranked ODI side with 123 ratings points, with Australia in second place on 115 ratings points.
To retain its number-one ranking, India has to win two or more matches in the series against Australia. However, Australia will have to win the series 6-1 or better to reclaim the number-one position, which it last held in July 2012.
In the event of a 6-1 series win for Australia, it will gain six ratings points to move to top spot on 121 ratings points, while India will drop to second position with 118 ratings points (a loss of five ratings points).
Meanwhile, India spinner Ravindra Jadeja will start the series as the joint number-one ranked bowler on the rankings for ODI Bowlers.
Jadeja shares the position with West Indies’ Sunil Narine, and has the opportunity to claim the sole number-one position for the first time in his career.
The Australia pace duo of Clint McKay and Mitchell Johnson are the other bowlers inside the top 10 of the rankings for ODI Bowlers (seventh and eighth respectively) with an opportunity to make an upward movement.
India’s Ravichandran Ashwin in 18th and Bhuvaneshwar Kumar in 20th are the other bowlers inside the top 20 of the rankings for ODI Bowlers who will be seen in action during the series.
The series will also feature as many as four batsmen who sit inside the top 10. They are Virat Kohli (fourth), MS Dhoni (seventh), George Bailey (ninth) and Shane Watson (10th)
India’s Suresh Raina in 16th place is the only other batsman inside the top 20, on either side.
The Reliance ICC Player Rankings for ODI Batsmen is headed by South Africa’s Hashim Amla, with his captain AB de Villiers in second place and Sri Lanka’s Kumar Sangakkara in third position.