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West Indies' batsman Andre Russell, right, and Shimron Hetmyer celebrate their victory over Sri Lanka by seven wickets in the second Twenty20 cricket match in Pallekele, Sri Lanka on March 6.

LONDON – Reigning Twenty20 world champions, West Indies, have moved up to ninth in the International Cricket Council’s rankings, gaining one place after languishing in 10th for several months.

Though there has been a cessation of all cricket globally due to the global novel coronavirus pandemic, the ICC revised the rankings to eliminate results from the 2016-17 period.

As a result, West Indies gained three points from the ICC update to move to 229 points while Afghanistan dropped five points to slip to 228 points, and down to 10th in the rankings.

After a run of poor results, West Indies found their best form last March, crushing Sri Lanka 2-0 in a two-match series in Pallekele.

However, the series win was only the Caribbean side’s second in 10 outings, a run of form which had led to their steady slide down the rankings.

In fact, since their capture of the T20 World Cup in India four years ago, West Indies have won just four of 15 series, excluding one-off matches.

For their part, Afghanistan have won their last six bilateral series, including a 2-1 verdict in a three-match series against West Indies in India last November.

Australia, meanwhile, have climbed to the top of the T20 standings for the first time since they were introduced in 2011, with England moving into second spot and India assuming third position.

Pakistan, who spent the last 27 months at the top, have slumped to fourth.

The T20 World Cup is scheduled to be played in Australia from October 18 to November 15 but could be scrapped as the world remains in lockdown because of the COVID-19 outbreak.

(CMC)