India can close the gap at the top

India has the chance to close the season within a point of South Africa in the Reliance Mobile ICC Test Rankings with a victory over New Zealand in the second Test in Napier.

Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni led India to a 10-wicket win in the first Test in Hamilton, its first Test victory in New Zealand in 33 years.

But South Africa’s consolation win in Cape Town over first-rated Australia ensured the Proteas cemented second spot ahead of India.

Even with a series whitewash, India cannot leapfrog South Africa into second spot. Both teams will then share a rating of 119, but India will fall behind by a fraction of a ratings point.

Even if the Black Caps rally and turn around the series to win 2-1 in Napier and Wellington, it cannot now escape from eighth place.

However, Daniel Vettori’s men can edge to within a point of West Indies with an series victory.

Milestones:

  • Should India be victorious in the next Test, it will be the 100th time they have emerged as winners in Test cricket.
  • Ishant Sharma is two wickets away from taking 50 Test wickets for India.

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