India Move Up To Second Spot In the ICC ODI Rankings

Rocky GettersSenior Writer IFebruary 7, 2009

Good news keeps pouring in for Team India. After their record-setting 9th consecutive win over Sri Lanka, India have climbed up to the second spot in the official ICC ODI rankings; thanks also to New Zealand's win over Australia.

This is the highest ever ranking held by India in the ODI rankings, ever since the official international cricketing body introduced them. Needless to say, captain fantastic MS Dhoni and coach Gary Kirsten are thrilled.

Next in their sights is obviously the top spot. But it'll be tough to snatch it from a brilliant South African team. But the way the Indian juggernaut has been rolling, nothing seems impossible.

Patience however is the key, as Dhoni has often pointed out in his press conferences. "Take one game at a time, don't think about records, and never be complacent." That's been their mantra for success.

A team which was always praised for producing plethora of young talent, but criticized heavily for lacking in professionalism and consistency, has changed its image in the past couple of years.

After the era of memorable heroics drenched in disappointments under Ganguly, and a forgettable Dravid stint, MS Dhoni finally has moulded them into a fierce, professional and dominating cricketing unit.

Team coach Gary Kirsten, bowling coach Venkatesh Prasad, fielding coach Robin Singh, along with the team physio and the team management have all done their bit.

But the biggest unsung heroes will have to be the selectors. Many a time they have faced sharp criticism, but that hasn't deterred them from taking strong decisions, and taking brave risks. In a nation where cricketers are revered as gods, these selectors have had the guts to challenge their positions.

In an absolute cricketing sense, these rankings are as important as your mother-in-law's opinion about you. The job is far from over. With a busy schedule ahead, anything can happen.

For now, MS Dhoni and Team India can enjoy the tag of "the team to beat".

The big question is; Can they overtake South Africa in the near future and become the top team in the ODIs?