DUBAI - Michael Clarke and AB de Villiers have gone joint-top of the ICC Test batsmen rankings after Kumar Sangakkara slipped from the spot due to a poor return in the Galle Test. Sangakkara, who had been on top of the rankings for four months, had scores of 0 and 14 in Galle, costing him 37 rating points and three places.

Jacques Kallis, who was second in the rankings, also lost points, after missing the Wellington Test, meaning Clarke, who had moved to third after his outstanding series against India, moved to the No. 1 spot. de Villiers joined him there after a couple of important half-centuries in South Africa’s series against New Zealand.

Not surprisingly, Vernon Philander has stormed into the top ten in the bowlers rankings, after taking 21 wickets in three Tests in New Zealand and becoming the second fastest bowler to 50 Test wickets.

That means South Africa now have all their three frontline fast bowlers in the top ten, with Dale Steyn still leading the rankings and Morne Morkel in tenth place. Also moving into the top ten is Rangana Herath, who, in Galle, took the first 12-wicket match-haul in a Test since Jason Krejza’s in 2008.

After losing in Galle, England must win against Sri Lanka in Colombo to retain their No. 1 ranking.

Anything less would see South Africa claim the No. 1 spot. If England lose in Colombo, it would open the door for Australia to overtake them, though they would need to beat West Indies 3-0 to do it.