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Friday, October 23, 2020

Beth Mooney new World No. 1 T20I batter; Shafali Verma drops to third

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Beth Mooney’s 259 runs in six innings at the Women’s T20 World Cup, the most in a single edition, has seen her move up two spots and become the new No. 1 T20I batter in the world.

Mooney scored 60 in the must-win group-stage game against New Zealand, then 28 in the semi-final against South Africa and finally 78 not out in the final against India on Sunday at the MCG, which Australia won to take the trophy for a fifth time. Her consistent run-scoring through the World Cup won her the Player of the Tournament award too.

India’s 16-year-old Shafali Verma had entered the playoff stage of the World Cup ranked No. 1, but a washed-out semi-final against England and 2 in the final meant she dropped to third.

New Zealand’s Suzie Bates remained in second place.

This is the first time Mooney has been at the top of the rankings chart; the closest she had come to being No. 1 was in March 2018, when she was ranked second. Her opening partner Alyssa Healy, who collected the Player of the Match award at the final for her blazing 39-ball 75, climbed two spots to fifth. The other big mover among batters was South Africa’s Laura Woolvardt, who moved 13 places to No. 31.

Among bowlers, the top four of Sophie Ecclestone, Megan Schutt, Shabnim Ismail and Amelia Kerr held on to their spots, Jess Jonassen and Deepti Sharma exchanged spots, the Australian moving up to fifth position after picking up 3 for 20 in the final. Jonassen’s career-best tally of 728 ranking points got her into the top five for the first time since November 2017.

Apart from being ranked No. 6 among bowlers, Sharma also jumped two spots to become No. 5 among T20I allrounders. Ahead of her are Sophie Devine, Ellyse Perry, Nat Sciver and Hayley Matthews.

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