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Pakistan drops to fifth spot

cricket Updated: Jan 26, 2009 07:03 IST

PTI
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Pakistan has slipped one place to fifth in the ICC ODI Championship table following its 2-1 series defeat at home to Sri Lanka.

Although Shoaib Malik's team won the first ODI of the series in Karachi thanks to a brilliant unbeaten century by Salman Butt, it then proceeded to lose the second and third matches after impressive displays by the visitors.

That means Pakistan loses three ratings points and drops below New Zealand into fifth place on the table.

For its part, Sri Lanka has gained two ratings points from that series and as a result stays in seventh position but it is now just one point behind England in sixth spot.

Mahela Jayawardene and his men next face third-placed India in a five-match ODI series from Wednesday.

Sri Lanka is a team with a proud one-day pedigree having won the ICC Cricket World Cup in 1996 and was runner-up the last time around in the West Indies.

During that event in April 2007 it was ranked as high as fourth in the world so no doubt the players will feel they belong further up that ladder than seventh.

Meanwhile, despite winning the series against Zimbabwe 2-1 Bangladesh lost one ratings point to 46 but has maintained its place in ninth position in the rankings. Zimbabwe is now just two ratings points behind 10th-placed Ireland having gained a point from that series.

There will be plenty of opportunities for change at the bottom of the table with Zimbabwe heading to 12th-placed Kenya for a five ODI series beginning in Mombasa on Tuesday.