New Zealand`s eight-wicket victory over Sri Lanka in the first test of their two-match series has given them an opportunity to start next year as they did this, with a series triumph over a higher-ranked opponent.
South Africa's pace spearhead Dale Steyn and batsman Hashim Amla have revealed that they are not focused on the Test rankings, post their recent innings and 220-run win over a beleaguered West Indies team in Centurion on Saturday.
India might be lagging way behind Australia in the Test rankings but the current World Cup holders are just 0.2 points behind the top-of-the-table Kangaroos in the ODI chart, according to the latest ICC release.
Cheteshwar Pujara, who has climbed to his career-best fifth in the ICC Test rankings for batsmen after a fine series in South Africa, on Monday said he had worked very hard on the fitness in the last six months after his knee surgery in 2011.
Australian vice-captain Brad Haddin said that his team is determined to press for a five-nil sweep of the Ashes series which will lift them from fifth to third on world Test rankings and to further avenge its recent defeats at England`s hands.
South Africa has retained their ranking as the number-one Test playing nation in the world and unleashed a new hero on the one-day international (ODI) stage in a year which yielded mixed results for them.
South Africa will be aiming to carry the winning momentum from their ODI series into the three-Test series against New Zealand starting in Dunedin tomorrow, as it will earn them the status of the No. 1 Test ranked side in the world in the ICC Test Championship table.
India can pip South Africa to second position in the ICC Test rankings if they manage to win their ongoing home series against the West Indies 3-0 and provided Graeme Smith`s side loses the upcoming two-Test rubber against Australia.