Dubai, Feb 17: Sri Lanka batsman Kusal Perera is the talk of the cricketing fraternity following his unbeaten heist of 153 runs in the fourth innings to guide Sri Lanka to a historic 1-wicket win over South Africa in the opening Test in Durban, on Saturday (February 16).
Following his match-winning knock at Durban, Perera climbed a massive 58 spots in the latest ICC Test Rankings for batsmen. His colossal effort - a 200-ball 153* - has been etched in the history of Sri Lankan cricket for what was the island nation's second-ever win on South African soil in Test cricket.
The epic knock helped Sri Lanka take a 1-0 lead in the two-match series, and Perera now sits handsomely at No.40 in the rankings, with a career-high rating of 556.
Pat Cummins climbs to the top in bowlers rankings:
The other big news to emerge after the latest update to the Tests rankings pertained to the ICC Player Rankings for Bowlers, with Pat Cummins leading the charts - he becomes the first Australian to top the bowlers' rankings since Glenn McGrath in 2006. Cummins has displaced Protea speedster Kagiso Rabada, who picked up just three wickets in the first Test, from the top position.
Despite the narrow loss, South Africa had something to cheer about too. They now have two batsmen in the top 10 of the batting rankings - Faf du Plessis, who scored a sublime 90 in the second innings in Durban, jumped seven spots to No.10, and Quinton de Kock, who scored 80 and 55, moved to No.8, jumping four places.
Du Plessis is joined by Sri Lanka's Dimuth Karunaratne at No.10, while de Kock is joint-eighth with team-mate Aiden Markram. Sri Lanka's middle-order batsman Dhananjaya de Silva was another significant mover in the batting charts - he moved up six places to No.57.
Elsewhere, Hashim Amla, who scored just 3 and 16 in Durban, slipped out of the top 10 and is currently at No.13 while Kusal Mendis, with 12 and 0, descended five spots to No.29.
Among the bowlers, Cummins' gain was Rabada's loss. The South African speedster slipped down to No.3 after the poor show in Durban. Cummins is now No.1 with 878 points and is followed by England's Jimmy Anderson, who has 862 points.
South Africa paceman Duanne Olivier also skipped three places to move up to No.22 with a career-best rating of 666. Vishwa Fernando, the Sri Lanka fast bowler, who took two four-wicket hauls in Durban, jumped 26 places to break into the top 50 at No.49.