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Virat Kohli on track to break Sachin Tendulkar’s ODI records - stats prove it!

Virat Kohli had a marvellous 2017 in ODIs and Tests, and with his run-scoring ability improving with every passing year, he is on track to break Sachin Tendulkar’s ODI record if he continues in the same vein. But his chances of doing that in Tests seem difficult.

cricket Updated: Dec 26, 2017 13:52 IST
Siddharth Vishwanathan
Siddharth Vishwanathan
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Virat Kohli,Sachin Tendulkar,Indian cricket team
Virat Kohli (R) is seen as the natural successor of Sachin Tendulkar in the Indian cricket team. The current strike-rate for Virat Kohli is just phenomenal.(HT Photo)

India’s cricket team has enjoyed a golden 2017. The side did not lose a single bilateral series in Tests, ODIs or Twenty20 Internationals. For Virat Kohli, his year was brilliant, notching up 1059 runs in 10 Tests at an average of 75.64 with five centuries. In ODIs, he racked up an amazing 1460 runs in 26 games, averaging 76.84 with six centuries.

The Indian skipper has also had a milestone-filled year. During the ODI against New Zealand in Kanpur, Kohli became the fastest to 9,000 runs, achieving the feat in just 194 innings. In Tests, against Sri Lanka at Feroz Shah Kotla, Kohli became the first skipper in history to hit six double centuries. Overall, Kohli has 9,030 runs in 202 ODIs at an average of 55.74 while in 63 Tests he has 5,268 runs averaging 53.75.

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Many cricket experts and former cricketers have said Virat Kohli is the “greatest batsman of his generation” and is on track to “break many batting records”. It has also led to comparisons with great players like Sachin Tendulkar, Ricky Ponting, Brian Lara and Jacques Kallis.

The question on everybody’s mind: Is Kohli on track to break Tendulkar’s record and whether his record is greater than the legendary quartet at this stage of his playing career?

Kohli - Supreme in ODIs

In ODIs, the India skipper is way ahead. Kohli is 1,576 runs ahead of Tendulkar. When it comes to averages, Kohli is the only player to cross 50.

The big question is whether Kohli is on track to break Sachin Tendulkar’s record tally of runs and hundreds in ODIs? The answer lies in the average. Since debut in 2008, Kohli has averaged 1,003 runs every year with three centuries. Kohli’s current age is 29. Tendulkar retired at 40.

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If Kohli plays for 11 more years and accomplishes the numbers mentioned above, he can potentially go past 20,000 ODI runs and notch up 65 centuries.

Great in Tests

Kohli’s Test numbers are also brilliant. Compared to Tendulkar, Ponting, Lara and Kallis, the Indian skipper is behind Lara in terms of runs at this stage. He is the only player to have a positive centuries-to-fifties comparison. Kohli lags behind Tendulkar on average, with the Master Blaster averaging 54 after 63 Tests compared to Kohli’s 53.

Kohli’s chances of overtaking Tendulkar’s tally of 15,921 Test runs, and 51 centuries, look difficult. On an average since Test debut in 2011, Kohli has scored 750 runs per year. If he plays for 11 more years, he can get past only Kallis and Rahul Dravid. Kohli needs to chalk up 970 runs per year to break Tendulkar’s feat. Kohli though has made a good start, scoring over 1,000 runs for two consecutive calendar years in 2016 and 2017.

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Quartet dominates overseas

With India’s 2018 consisting of tours to South Africa, England and Australia, the challenge will go up for Kohli. However, he has a great record overseas, barring England where he averages 13.40 in five Tests.

Overall, in 31 Tests, Kohli has 2,347 runs at an average of 45.13. Again, he has a magnificent century conversion, scoring 10 tons to five fifties. However, Tendulkar, Kallis and Ponting leave Kohli behind when it comes to the average while Lara has more runs. Based on just the numbers, Kohli is on track to carve his own place among the all-time greats.

First Published: Dec 26, 2017 08:58 IST