Third placed New Zealand will be looking to close the gap on India to two points in the ICC ODI Team Rankings when it faces Zimbabwe in a three-match series, which starts at Harare, on Sunday, 2 August.
The Black Caps currently lie in third spot on 112 points, three behind India, while host Zimbabwe is ranked 11th, seven points behind Ireland. If New Zealand wins all three matches, then it will be retain its position and close the gap from three to two points, but will drop points in any other scenario.
On the other side of the coin, a 3-0 victory for Zimbabwe can elevate it to 51 points and, in the event of that outcome, it would overtake Ireland into 10th position. A 2-1 series victory would see it hold its ranking position, but gain five points in the process. In both scenarios, New Zealand would be overtaken by South Africa.
Zimbabwe (43 pts) v New Zealand (112 pts)
â€¢?????????If Zim wins 3-0, then Zim 51 pts, NZ 106 pts
â€¢?????????If Zim wins 2-1, then Zim 48 pts, NZ 108 pts
â€¢?????????If NZ wins 3-0, then Zim 42 pts, NZ 113 pts
â€¢?????????If NZ wins 2-1, then Zim 45 pts, NZ 111 pts
â€¢?????????If the series is drawn 1-1, then Zim 45 pts, NZ 110 pts
Meanwhile New Zealand captain Kane Williamson is the highest ranked batsman on either side in the heading into the series. The 24-year-old Tauranga man has been in top run-scoring form of late and has scored a century and four half centuries in his last five ODI innings (93, 118, 90, 50 and 57). He currently lies in fifth spot in the ICC Player Rankings for ODI Batsmen on 786 points, four behind Indiaâ€™s Virat Kohli. There are three other Black Caps inside the top 50 in the rankings aiming for upwards movement; Martin Guptill (22nd), Grant Elliott (45th) and Luke Ronchi (47th).
Just three places and 16 points separate Zimbabweâ€™s top three leading batsmen heading into the series; Sean Williams (in 56th position on 533 points), skipper Elton Chigumbura (57th) and Hamilton Masakadza (58th) who will all be looking to advance.
In the ICC Players Rankings for ODI Bowlers, Zimbabwe off-spinner Prosper Utseya (35th) will be looking to progress in the series alongside his team-mate Williams, who lies in 81st position. In the absence of Trent Boult, meanwhile, New Zealandâ€™s Matt Henry (41st) is his sideâ€™s highest ranked bowler followed by Nathan McCullum (52nd) and Adam Milnes (71st).
Bangladeshâ€™s Shakib Al Hasan continues to hold a commanding lead at the top of the ICC Player Rankings for ODI All-rounders on 418 points.
Zimbabwe v New Zealand
2 Aug â€“ First ODI, Harare
4 Aug â€“ Second ODI, Harare
7 Aug â€“ Third ODI, Harare
ICC ODI Championship table
Rank Team Points
1 Australia 129
2 India 115
3 New Zealand 112
4 South Africa 109
5 Sri Lanka 103
6 England 98
7 Bangladesh 96
8 Pakistan 90
9 West Indies 88
10 Ireland 50
11 Zimbabwe 43
12 Afghanistan 41Post published in: Cricket