Dhoni, Mills top ICC ODI rankings

      New Zealand fast bowler Kyle Mills has claimed the number-one position for the first time in his career in the ICC ODI Player Rankings for bowlers at the end of the Champions Trophy which was retained by Australia at Centurion on Monday. Mills, who started the elite eight-team tournament in number-two position trailing Sri Lanka's Nuwan Kulasekara by seven points, now leads his Sri Lanka counterpart by 10 points. They are the only two bowlers in the 700-point mark, which in ranking terms marks out a player as truly great. Mills has been in the top 10 since December 2007 and finished as the third leading wicket-taker in the tournament with nine wickets to play a leading role in New Zealand's progress to the final where it lost to Australia by six wickets. New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori has slipped to third in the latest rankings after hamstring injury forced him to miss the final. A player loses one per cent of his points for every match missed. The biggest mover in the bowling table is Australia's Brett Lee who has returned to the top 20 after finishing with six wickets in the tournament. The 32-year-old has jumped five places to 16th spot. Outside the top 20, Australia off-spinner Nathan Hauritz and fast bowler Shane Watson have also made good upward progress. Hauritz, who took five wickets in the tournament, has achieved his career-best ranking to date of 37th position while Watson's six wickets in the event have helped him leap three places to share 40th spot with Abdur Razzak of Bangladesh. Peter Siddle, who won the ICC Emerging Player of the Year 2009 award at the LG ICC Awards in Johannesburg last week, has rocketed 40 places to 109th spot after claiming six wickets in the tournament. In the Reliance Mobile ICC Player Rankings for ODI batsmen, India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni continues to lead the field with his vice-captain Yuvraj Singh a distant second. The only major change in the top 20 is Australia captain Ricky Ponting who won the player of the tournament award. The Tasmanian has climbed one place to eighth while South Africa's AB de Villiers has moved up to fourth after Michael Hussey failed to defend his position and dropped one place to fifth. Also, Shoaib Malik's slip by three places has benefitted Sri Lanka captain Kumar Sangakkara and ICC Test Player of the Year 2009 Gautam Gambhir of India. The two left-handers have moved up one place each to 15th and 16th respectively. Outside the top 20, Watson, who hit back-to-back centuries in the semi-final and final, has vaulted 18 places to achieve his career-best ranking to date of 35th position. However, the biggest mover in the batting table is Pakistan's Umar Akmal who has rocketed 21 places to occupy 57th position while Grant Elliott of New Zealand has jumped 16 places to 51st position. In the Reliance Mobile ICC Player Rankings for ODI all-rounders, Watson's all-rounder performance in the ICC Champions Trophy (265 runs and six wickets) has helped him break into the top five for the first time in his career. The 28-year-old Queenslander now shares fourth spot with Pakistan's Shahid Afridi after jumping nine places. The list is still headed by Bangladesh's Shakib Al Hasan while Yuvraj Singh of India is second and Jacques Kallis of South Africa third.

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