Longest Streaks As No.1 Test Team
India team has recently been handed over with the ICC test championship mace and Virat Kohli, the captain of the Indian team received the award on behalf of the whole team. Moreover, its worth mentioning that this is the second year in running when India has finished on the top of the ICC rankings and they have achieved this remarkable feat on the back of some of the most exemplary performances in the recent times.
India scored a prolific victory on their recent tour to Australia and won a test series for the first ever time on Australian soil and this can be said to be the biggest reflection of their success and dedication in the same direction. Moreover, there have been other teams which have stood on the top of the ICC rankings but there are only few which have managed to keep that dominance for a long time. With that said, let’s take a look at the Top 5 longest streaks as a number one test team.
#5 England (12 months)
2011-2012 can be quoted as the Golden era of the English cricket and the team went on to top the ICC test rankings out of their brilliant performance in the same year against most of the top teams around. Under the captaincy of their seasoned player Alastair Cook, the team rose to glory after beating down the touring Indian team in a 4 test match series. Before the commencement of the same series, England was required to defeat India with a margin of two tests in 2011 and they did extremely well by winning the series 4-0 and hence rising to the top of the ICC test rankings.
England stayed on top for the next 12 months as they kept on going with their brilliant run in the longest format of cricket against almost every team around. Still, at the end of their reign at the top, they were been replaced by the South African team in August 2012 after they managed to win only 5 out of the 13 test matches they played in the process. This is the reason they stand at the number 5 spot in our list of Top 5 longest streaks as a number one test team.
#4 South Africa and India ( 18 months )
The number 4 spot is jointly owned by the South African and Indian team as they both have achieved this feat for a period of 18 months in their own respective years. Nothing was going right for the South African team in the year 2014 as they lost the test series at home to the Australian team 2-1. Still, the team didn’t give up and came back strongly under the leadership of their new captain Hashim Amla in a test match series against Sri Lanka at their own backyard. After winning the first test in a convincing manner, they drew the next one and reclaimed their number one spot in the ICC test rankings.
On the other side, the Indian team, under the captaincy of Virat Kohli, did achieve this feat recently when they received the honor for the ICC test team for maintaining their reign on top for a period of 18 months. Kohli who led the team in the season 2016, made the team win across all the top countries around the globe with his impeccable performance with the bat. Quite recently, he also led them to victory against the Australian team for the very first time whilst doing well on the tours of England and South Africa alongside.
#3 South Africa ( 21 months )
2012 was the year when South Africa was making everyone believe in their capabilities to thrive at the top level; of the International cricket and this was the year which saw them rise to the top spot of the ICC test rankings for the second time in their history. The Proteas were going great guns under the brilliant captaincy of their youngest captain Graeme Smith who led them to some phenomenal victories against a team like Australia, England and New Zealand. Well, that as some achievement against the team which was known for their prowess in test cricket at that time.
Meanwhile, we can certainly quote the dominance of Graeme Smith with his bat in the test cricket behind this impeccable performance of the South African team. During the same period, he amassed 825 runs at an astonishing average of more than 50. South African team kept the baton for the next 21 months whilst winning 15 tests out of the 31 matches they played. Moreover, they drew 10 games whilst only losing 6 of them in the process.
#2 India (21 months)
2009 was the year when the Indian team was going through their best times under the leadership of MS Dhoni and they also took the top spot from the South African team during the same time. This happened once the Indian team defeated the Sri lankan team during a home series, 3-0. The Indian team went on to maintain the same dominance for a period of 21 months which started from November 2009 till August 2011.
Whilst India lost the same spot to the English team after a poor show at the overseas tour to the same team, they won 11 matches out of the 25 matches they played. Moreover, they lost 7 and also drew 7 matches in the same process. India did perform well in the home series against almost every nation but struggled to keep the same run going on foreign tours.
#1 Australia (74 months)
You don’t really have to guess the name of the country who has dominated the cricket world for an era and Australia fits right into that category. Just when the ICC test rankings came into the picture in 2003, Australia took the baton and remained there for the next 74 months on the trot. This has been the longest reign at the top of the test rankings by any test playing nation and there wasn’t any team which came even near to the same record.
Although Australia was doing great under the captaincy of Steve Waugh, they rose to some real dominance under the leadership of Ricky Ponting. It was during the same era when Australia was comprised of players like Matthew Hayden, Justin Langer, Adam Gilchrist, Shane Warne, and many others. During the same time, Australia won 47 test matches out of the 74 matches they played and they lost only 12 matches in the whole process. Still, it was in the year 2009 when they were been replaced by South Africa as the number on the test team. Overall, the Australian team has proved yet again why they have been known as the most dominant power in the world of cricket.
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