Steve Smith raises the bat in Jamaica // Getty Images

Smith's numbers up there with best ever

No surprise to see Steve Smith crowned the world's best after the run of form he's had

Australia superstar Steve Smith is now the second-youngest batsman after India's Sachin Tendulkar to reach No.1 in the International Cricket Council Test batting rankings, and it’s little surprise to cricket fans he’s achieved the feat given his unbelievable run of form.

Smith gained 49 ranking points for his efforts in Australia’s second Test win over the West Indies in Jamaica, with the 26-year-old winning man of the match honours for scores of 199 and 54 not out.

The increase saw Smith crash through the 900-point barrier for the first time in his career, and he now sits on 913.

He is the 29th batsman to pass 900 ranking points and the eighth Australia to do so after Sir Donald Bradman (961), Ricky Ponting (942), Matthew Hayden (935), Doug Walters (922), Neil Harvey (921), Mike Hussey (921) and Michael Clarke (900).

It has been a meteoric rise for Smith who hit No.1 at 26 years and 12 days, only a few months short of Tendulkar’s record which was set in 1999 when he topped the batting chart for the first time at the age of 25 years and 279 days.

ICC Rankings May 15

Smith had entered the four-Test series against India in Australia last December in 13th position on 730 points but since then has dominated with five centuries and three half centuries.

Since Smith came back into the team for the third Test in India in March, 2013, Australia have played 23 Tests and the blond right-hander is the only player to have taken part in every match.

In those 23 Tests, Australia has batted first in the match 14 times with Smith registering scores of 92, 46, 89, 138no, 31, 6, 111, 100, 84, 162no, 192, 117 and 199 - a total of 1,482 runs at an average of 123.5.

During the same period for Australia, Smith has scored a total of 2,274 runs at an average of 62.92, ahead of teammates David Warner with 2,049 runs at 49.98 (21 Tests), Chris Rogers 1,516 runs at 40.97 (19 Tests), Michael Clarke 1,254 runs at 40.45 (19 Tests), Shane Watson 1,201 runs at 32.46 (20 Tests), Brad Haddin 980 runs at 28.82 (22 Tests) and Shaun Marsh 558 runs at 39.86 (seven Tests).

In the eight Tests since the start of the two-Test series against Pakistan in United Arab Emirates in October, Smith has scored 1,226 runs at an average of 102.17, with five centuries and five half-centuries.

All five of Smith's Test tons have come in the first innings of those eight matches, when he has posted scores of 22, 0, 162no, 133, 192, 117, 25 and 199 (850 runs at 121.43).

Key Stats

Highest batting averages when batting first in a Test (minimum 10 innings):

1st - Don Bradman 2,387 runs at 113.66

2nd - Steve Smith 1,524 runs at 89.64

3rd - Stanley Jackson (England) 944 runs at 85.81

4th - George Headley (West Indies) 934 runs at 84.90

5th - Bill Ponsford 1148 runs at 82.00

Highest batting averages for player’s first innings in Tests. IE: Batting first or second (minimum 10 innings):

1st - Don Bradman 4,697 runs at 97.85

2nd - Everton Weekes (West Indies) 3,429 runs at 71.43

3rd - Steve Smith 1,844 runs at 70.92

4th - Vinod Kambli (Ind) 1,037 runs at 69.13

5th - John Reid (NZ) 1,163 runs at 68.41

Percentage on hundreds scored when batting first in a Test (all countries):

1st - Steve Smith 8 in 19 inns = 42.1%

2nd - Don Bradman 9 in 22 inns = 40.9%

Runs scored in first 28 Tests of career (Australians):

1st - Don Bradman 3,849 runs

2nd - Neil Harvey 2,725 runs

3rd - Mike Hussey 2,610 runs

4th - Steve Smith 2,587 runs 

5th - Mark Taylor 2,565 runs

Best batting average in first 28 Tests of career (minimum 2,000 runs - Australians):

1st - Don Bradman 3,849 runs at 98.69

2nd - Mike Hussey 2,610 runs at 66.92

3rd - Neil Harvey 2,725 runs at 60.56

4th - Steve Smith 2,587 runs at 56.23

5th - Doug Walters 2,442 runs at 55.50

Runs scored in first 28 Tests of career (all countries):

Don Bradman 3,849

Everton Weekes (West Indies) 2,915

Neil Harvey 2,725

Kevin Pietersen (England) 2,724

Mike Hussey 2,610

Herbert Sutcliffe (England) 2,587

Steve Smith 2,587

Dudley Nourse (South Africa) 2,567

Wally Hammond (England) 2,565

Mark Taylor 2,565

Number of centuries scored in first 28 Tests (Australians):

Don Bradman 15

Neil Harvey 11

Arthur Morris 10

Mike Hussey 9

Steve Smith 9

Number of centuries scored in first 28 Tests (all countries):

Don Bradman 15

Neil Harvey 11

Denis Compton (England) 10

Arthur Morris 10

Everton Weekes (West Indies) 10

Sunil Gavaskar (India) 9

MIke Hussey 9

Kevin Pietersen (England) 9

Steve Smith 9

Andrew Strauss (England) 9

Herbert Sutcliffe (England) 9

- Stats compiled by Tom Iceton

JUST IN: Latest ICC - International Cricket Council rankings reveal a new No.1 Test batsman - Steve Smith:

Posted by on Sunday, June 14, 2015