Moeen Ali will take a 45 point lead at the top of England’s Professional Cricketers’ Association Most Valuable Player Rankings in Test cricket into the three-match series against the West Indies which gets underway under the Edgbaston floodlights on Thursday.
The Worcestershire all-rounder had an outstanding series against South Africa in which he collected at least four wickets in an innings in each of the four Tests and finished with 25 wickets.
He took 10 wickets in the match in the series opener at Lord’s and finished with 5-69 to help England wrap up the series at Old Trafford.
Ali’s wickets at Old Trafford gave him 20 PCA MVP bowling points to go with the 25 for his 6-53 in the second innings at Lord’s.
The 30-year-old finished the South Africa series with 95 bowling points and he added 42 batting points which included valuable half centuries in the first innings at Lord’s and the second innings at Old Trafford.
His 75 from 66 balls at Manchester made up almost 31 per cent of England’s second innings runs and gave Ali 19 PCA MVP points towards a match haul of 49 points.
The PCA MVP Rankings system identifies the match-winners and key influencers of matches throughout the domestic season.
The formula takes into account conditions, quality of opposition, captaincy and strike-rates as well as runs scored and wickets taken.
Ali will start the West Indies series on 144 points in Test cricket this season with Joe Root requiring just one point at Edgbaston to become the second player to the 100 points milestone.
Root reached 50 in five of his eight innings against South Africa and finished the series with 88 batting points in the Test rankings.
Root leads this season’s overall England PCA MVP with 226 from all formats of the game. Ali is second on 188 points with Ben Stokes (182 points) third. Jonny Bairstow (139) fourth and England’s white ball captain Eoin Morgan (102) fifth.
Jimmy Anderson needs one point at Edgbaston to become the fifth player to reach 100 for the summer.
Former Test captain Alastair Cook will start the West Indies series needing 64 more points to become only the third player, after Anderson and Stuart Broad, to accumulate 2,000 career rankings points in Test cricket since the PCA MVP system was introduced in 2007.
Broad (3,325) and Anderson (3,085) are the only players to have reached the 3,000 points landmark across all formats with Cook third in the all-time list on 2,497.