England players will be vying for top spot of the PCA Test Match MVP Rankings with the Test series in New Zealand providing the final opportunity for points during the winter campaign.

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England return to five-day cricket in Auckland this Thursday after successful one-day series against Australia and New Zealand.

James Anderson arrived in New Zealand top of England’s Test Match Rankings after the Ashes series down under which saw him take 17 wickets at an average of 27.82.

England’s leading wicket taker will be hopeful of remaining top of the Test Rankings for the winter programme after achieving the same feat during last summer’s campaign.

Stuart Broad remains Anderson’s closest competitor in the Test format and is currently one wicket away from hitting a landmark 400 International Test wickets.

Broad will be hopeful of joining the illustrious names currently on 400 with only the aforementioned Anderson ahead of him in English history.

Despite their Test achievements both Anderson and Broad are some way behind in the overall MVP rankings with neither featuring in any white-ball cricket during the winter.

Chris Woakes is currently in first place in the overall rankings after his excellent performances in the recent ODI’s and the Warwickshire all-rounder, who looks set to partner Anderson with the new-ball, will be hoping to continue his rich vein of form that has seen England’s once unsung hero at the forefront of the side.

Alastair Cook sits as the highest ranked batsman in the Test MVP rankings after his remarkable 244 not out in the fourth Ashes Test at the MCG – a record score for a visiting batsman.

Captain Joe Root comes into the series off the back of a century during his side’s final warm-up match against a New Zealand XI in Hamilton and is placed just behind Cook in the table.

Root will be desperate to lead his side to a series victory after disappointment in Australia earlier in the winter and with the additional bonus of captaincy points, the Yorkshireman could find himself moving up the MVP table.

Fellow Yorkshireman Jonny Bairstow will also be hoping to end the winter with a flourish after back to back Centuries in recent ODI’s against New Zealand saw him propel up the leader board.

Bairstow currently sits sixth in the Test rankings and second overall and may see this series as his opportunity to finish to make top spot his own.

England face the Blackcaps in a two-test series starting Thursday 1am (GMT) at Eden Park, Auckland to end their gruelling winter.

The PCA MVP rankings system is designed by the players and helps identify the match-winners and key influencers of matches throughout the season.

The rankings system provides a rigorous analysis of player performances with more in-depth coverage than traditional batting and bowling averages.

To view the England MVP Rankings click here.