Kallis nears 900-point mark in Test rankings

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Lahore, Oct 8 (UNI) South Africa's batting mainstay Jacques Kallis is on the verge of joining an exclusive club of Test batsmen to reach 900 rating points in the latest LG ICC Rankings.

Kallis, whose personal best mark of 896 rating points came in December 2005, is 12 points away from becoming the 23rd batsmen in Test history to cross the magic mark.

The mark is an indication of true quality as to achieve it a player has to be among the very best over a protracted period, something confirmed by the fact that only 22 players in Test history have got there.

His superlative innings of 155 and 100 not out, that paved the way for the Proteas' 160-run win in the first Test against Pakistan in Karachi, have seen him secure 68 rating points and put him at 888, just eight points behind his career-best mark.

And a repeat of that sort of form in the second Test here which starts today will give him every chance of breaking through the 900-point mark for the first time.

Three of his contemporaries are already there, with Australia captain Ricky Ponting leading the listings with 936 rating points from Pakistan's Mohammad Yousuf (906) and Sri Lanka's Kumar Sangakkara (900).

Kallis' two centuries in Karachi, that made him only the fourth South Africa player to achieve the feat, allowed him to leapfrog England's Kevin Pietersen and the Australian duo of Mike Hussey and Matthew Hayden and move into fourth place in the Test batsmen's rankings.

And Kallis is not the only South African to make a move in the rankings. In the bowling table paceman Dale Steyn, who had match figures of 7-106 in Karachi, climbs six places to 26th while left-arm spinner Paul Harris, who took 7-131, jumps 14 spots to 40th in LG ICC Player Rankings for Test bowlers.

The same, though, cannot be said about Pakistan's new ball bowlers Mohammad Asif and Umar Gul. Asif drops four places to 10th and Umar slips two spots to 20th.

However, there is a positive news for Pakistan with the progress of left-arm spinner Abdul Rehman, into the listing in 57th place after match figures of 8-210 in Karachi.

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