Ross Taylor's momentous summer continued yesterday as he rose to a career-high fourth in the world test batting rankings.

Taylor's three hundreds in the three West Indian tests bumped him up to 871 points. That eclipses former opener Glenn Turner's 845, which was the previous high for a New Zealand batsman when he was recently ranked the world's best in 1974 on retrospective ratings.

Taylor sits behind only South Africans AB de Villiers and Hashim Amla, and West Indian Shiv Chanderpaul.

Among those he has clambered over are Australian captain Michael Clarke - recently named International Cricket Council player of the year - and sixth-placed Sri Lankan Kumar Sangakkara.


Add in seamers Trent Boult (10th) and Tim Southee (13th) and New Zealand players are starting to make an impact on the rankings ladder.

The bowling list is headed by two South Africans, Vernon Philander and Dale Steyn.

"It's early days, we have some guys who are hungry to perform on the world stage and match themselves up against the best players rather than just being the best in New Zealand," New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum said.

After Taylor, Kane Williamson is next best on the batting list at No21, followed by McCullum at No34.

Southee will skip the first two West Indies ODIs for treatment on a toe, but is expected to return for the third game in Queenstown on New Year's Day.

Cricket's finest
World test rankings
Batting: 1 AB de Villiers (South Africa) 906pts, 2 Hashim Amla (South Africa) 881, 3 Shiv Chanderpaul (West Indies) 876, 4 Ross Taylor (NZ) 871, 5 M Clarke (Australia) 868.

Bowlers: 1 Vernon Philander (South Africa) 912, 2 Dale Steyn (South Africa) 890, 3 Rangana Herath (Sri Lanka) 831, 4 Saeed Ajmal (Pakistan) 824, 5 Ryan Harris (Australia) 796.
Also: 10 Trent Boult (NZ) 729, 13 Tim Southee (NZ) 699.