T20 World Cup final heroics propel Hardik Pandya to top spot in all-rounder rankings

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Hardik Pandya became the first Indian cricketer to be ranked the number one all-rounder in the world in T20Is after ICC released the updated charts on Wednesday. The 30-year-old leapfrogged Mohammed Nabi to go level on points with Wanindu Hasaranga who previously held the coveted spot alone.

‌Hardik Pandya's upsurge came from a fruitful T20 World Cup campaign, where he picked 10 wickets and scored 144 runs at a strike rate exceeding 150. The Baroda player was particularly instrumental in the final at Bridgetown against South Africa where he kickstarted the Proteas' downfall by scalping Heinrich Klaasen after an explosive fifty and then comprehensively defending 16 runs in a high-stakes final over, including the wicket of David Miller. Pandya eventually finished with stellar figures of 3/20 from three overs and had also hit a crucial boundary at the death in the first innings.

Pandya thus became the first ever Indian to climb to the top of the ICC charts for all-rounders in T20Is, with the next best-placed Indian Axar Patel a distant 12th in the list and no other Man in Blue present in the top 40.

Pandya went from third to first with 222 points to his name, the same as Sri Lankan skipper Wanindu Hasaranga, while the previously second-ranked Afghan Mohammed Nabi fell four places despite his team's historic run in the tournament. As a result, Marcus Stoinis, Sikandar Raza, and Shakib Al Hasan all rose one spot respectively to round off the top five.

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