For the record: Virat Kohli vs Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar

Benjamin Graham and Warren Buffett. Socrates and Plato. Sonny and Cher.

Okay, maybe not that last one, but the roles of the master and his protégé have been well-trodden throughout history.

For any young and upcoming Indian batsman, they must deal with being “The Next Tendulkar”.

This is a wax-work of Sachin Tendulkar at Madame Tussauds. Yeh, I don’t understand why that place is popular either. (Credit: mvkulkarni23)

Virat Kohli knows this more than anyone. Adored at levels we outside India can scarcely believe, his every move and haircut is scoured with a fine-tooth comb. (Or should that be hair comb? Does anyone even know what a fine-tooth comb even is anymore? It’s not got anything to do with actual teeth. Where was I?)

I once read many years ago that Sachin Tendulkar appeared in 50% of Indian TV adverts. I have no proof for this example of pre-truth factage, but I read it in a book not on the internet.

But it is on that stretch of land a chain* in length that Kohli’s Tendulkarian properties must be judged, rather than on his endorsements.

*A chain is equal to 22 yards, 66 feet, 100 links, or four rods. Units of measurement are great.

The ultimate showdown: Kohli vs Tendulkar

 Test  Runs Average Age Runs Average Age
 1  19 9.50 22 15 15.00 16
 10  703 41.35 23 577 41.21 17
 20  1,235 41.16 25 1,085 37.41 19
 30  2,111 43.08 26 1,963 51.65  20
 40  2,862 43.36 27 2,660 52.15  23
 50 3,891 48.03 28 3,438 49.82  23
 53  4,209 50.10 28 3,617 50.23  23
 200  ? ? ? 15,921 53.78  40

Tendulkar, having started his Test career at age 16, had a head-start on most cricketers. That he then went on to play until he was 40, taking in 200 Test matches, is ridiculous.

After 53 Tests, Kohli has 592 more runs at an almost identical average.

Man. Myth. Kohli. (Credit: Himanisdas)

However, at his current rate of Tests played, he would have to play until his mid-40s (though India are shifting their emphasis towards Tests as can be seen by Kohli’s having played 23 Tests since December 2014).

At his current rate of run-making, Kohli would have to play 200 Tests – the exact same number that Tendulkar played – though if the form he has shown in his past 13 Tests were to continue, he would reach 15,921 runs in his 167th Test.

At 10 Tests per year, he could reach that number of Tests at around 40 years old.

Could he do it? COULD HE?


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