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Ballance on the rise

Gary Ballance’s third century of the summer has lifted the left-hander to a career-best position in the latest ICC player rankings for Test batsmen.

Ballance cracked 156 in the series-levelling 266-run win in the third Investec Test against India at the Ageas Bowl to jump 16 places to be ranked 31st in the world.

There were also improvements for Ian Bell – who moved into the top 20 – and skipper Alastair Cook.

Bell top-scored with 167 in England’s mammoth first innings 569 for seven declared to help set up the win.

The Warwickshire right-hander therefore gained five places to move up to 19th place – three positions behind England’s top-ranked Test batsman Joe Root.

Gary Ballance continued his climb up the ICC Test batsmen rankings after cracking his third century in six games for England

Cook passed 50 in both innings in Southampton, and fell just five runs shy of a long-awaited century, to lift him seven places to 22nd in the rankings.

Man of the match James Anderson moved up a single place to seventh in the bowlers’ rankings after he claimed the 16th Test five-wicket haul of his career on his 32nd birthday.

Anderson is the leading wicket-taker in the series, just one ahead of Moeen Ali who snared 6-67 on the final day to spin England to victory.

Moeen’s career-best day helped him leap 34 places to the 38th on the list, which is headed by South Africa quick Dale Steyn.

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