Fakhar Zaman, who cemented his reputation as a clutch former on Sunday, has deservedly soared to number two in the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) T20I player rankings for batsmen.
The Man from Mardan, who made his name with a scintillating century in the ICC Champions Trophy final against India last year, was at it again in the Tri-nation T20 series decided against Australia on Sunday.
Unfazed by wickets tumbling around him, Fakhar smashed a 46-ball 91 that paved way for Pakistan to track down the Aussies’ 188-run target with four balls and six wickets to spare.
In all, Zaman scored a staggering 278 run in five outings in the Zimbabwe-hosted tournament at an average of 55-6 — almost unheard-of figures for the game’s shortest international formats.
His incredible production was duly rewarded as the latest rankings published by the ICC has seen him soar to the number two spot, behind just Australia captain Aaron Finch. Zaman now has 842 rating points — just 49 less than Finch’s tally.
Zaman’s ascension sees India’s Lokesh Rahul, previously number two, deteriorate to number three. Also among the casualties of Zaman’s rise is his teammate Babar Azam, who is currently inactive owing to a forearm injury he suffered in March during the tour of England.
Meanwhile, spin starlet Shadab Khan continues to occupy the second spot in the corresponding T20I ratings for bowlers.
Elsewhere, Azam is number two in the ODI rankings for batsmen, trailing Indian captain Virat Kohli only. Hasan Ali is number three in the 50-over rankings for bowlers, whereas Mohammad Hafeez is number two in the all-rounder lists.
No Pakistani player ranks among the top five in any of the Test cricket rankings.