Australia has won a cash award of US$175,000 after confirming its status as the No.1 ranked ODI side in the world following its victory over the West Indies in the first ODI at Kingstown on Friday.
This award is presented annually to the side that tops the ICC ODI Championship table at the 1 April cut-off date.
The 64 runs triumph has kept Shane Watson’s side on 127 ratings points but more importantly this means it cannot drop behind second-ranked South Africa even if it loses the remaining four ODIs of the current series.
If Australia loses the remaining matches, it will finish on 120 ratings points – one ahead of South Africa.
Apart from winning the US$175,000 award, the four-time world champion has also retained the prestigious ODI Championship shield for the third year running. Overall, Australia has finished at the top of the tree at the 1 April cut-off date nine times since the current rankings system was introduced in 2002.
In 2008 and 2009, South Africa had won the ODI shield while Australia had finished second at the cut-off date.
Meanwhile, India’s five-wicket defeat against Bangladesh in an Asia Cup match in Mirpur on Friday means South Africa has secured second position on the ODI Championship table at the cut-off date.
The defeat resulted in India slipping from 118 ratings points to 116 ratings point and now even victories against Pakistan on Sunday 18 March and then again on Thursday 22 March, if it reaches the final, will not be enough to put it ahead of South Africa.
As such, AB de Villiers’s side has won a prize of US$75,000 for this achievement. This is in addition to the US$75,000 it won on Sunday after finishing second to England in the ICC Test Championship table at the 1 April cut-off date.
England retained the Test Championship mace and earned US$175,000 when it secured the No.1 position after rain had the last laugh on the fifth and last day of the Dunedin Test between New Zealand and South Africa which ended in a draw.
South Africa had entered in the three-Test series against New Zealand, needing to win all the matches to leapfrog England. And though it may end up winning the last two Tests, it will not be enough to put it ahead of Andrew Strauss’s side at the 1 April cut-off date.
England takes on Sri Lanka in the first Test in Galle from 26 March. But as the Test Championship table, unlike the ODI Championship table, is only updated at the end of a series, the outcome of Sri Lanka-England Test series will not count as it will finish in Colombo on 7 April.
For the next three years, a total of US$3.8m will be distributed as prize money with the side topping the table at the 1 April cut-off date in 2013 to receive a minimum of $450,000 rising to $500,000 in 2015. From 2016, there will be further increases in Test prize money.