PwC ratings August 21, 2004

Harmison rises to the top of the ratings

Wisden Cricinfo staff

Steven Harmison: No. 1 © Getty Images

Steve Harmison is the best bowler in the world, according to the PwC ratings.

Harmison, who bounced back from a quiet series to take nine wickets at The Oval, including 6 for 46 in the first-innings debacle, has leapfrogged Sri Lanka's Muttiah Muralitharan and South Africa's Shaun Pollock to become the first England bowler to top the rankings for more than two decades.

It is a reflection of England's current dominance that all four of their leading bowlers are rated among the world's top 20, with both Ashley Giles and Andrew Flintoff making spectacular improvements this year. Flintoff is also rated among the top three allrounders in the world.

West Indies' problems are reflected by the sorry state of their individual ratings. Apart from Lara (third in the batting) and Chanderpaul (20th), not one player features at the top of the lists.