Dravid drops to fourth place in ICC rankings

He moves a step down as Kevin Pietersen becomes the highest rated England batsman in more than 40 years.

india Updated: Dec 21, 2006 19:49 IST

Indian captain Rahul Dravid has been pushed one step down to fourth by star England batsman Kevin Pietersen who has become the highest rated England batsman in more than 40 years and the seventh highest of all time, according to the latest LG ICC Test Player Rankings.

The 26-year-old has been a consistent performer so far in the Ashes series, making 398 runs in six innings at an average of 79.60. His good form has moved him ahead of Michael Vaughans best rating of 876 points, achieved during the 2002/3 Ashes series.

Pietersen is now the seventh highest rated England batsman of all time, just one point behind Wally Hammond whose career best rating came during the 1933 tour of New Zealand that followed the Bodyline series in Australia .

Pietersen also has the opportunity to join the exclusive club of batsmen with more than 900 ratings points. Only five England players in history have achieved that milestone.

The only men ahead of him now are Australia captain Ricky Ponting in first position and Pakistan run machine Mohammed Yousuf in second spot.

There has been plenty of movement in the top 20 with no fewer than six batsmen achieving the highest ratings of their careers to date.

Australia middle-order batsman Michael Clarke has moved into the top 20 for the first time, rocketing up 13 places to 13th position after an exceptional Ashes series so far.

In five innings, the 25-year-old New South Welshman has scored 373 runs, including two hundreds and a fifty, at an average of 124.33.

First Published: Dec 21, 2006 19:49 IST