Indian captain Virat Kohli ended his 2019 Test century drought by scoring a sparkling hundred in Pune on Friday to put the hosts on top vs South Africa in the ongoing 2nd Test. In doing so, Kohli not just scored his 26th Test century but soon also brought up his 150.
With this, he surpassed Australian legend Don Bradman as the captain with most scores of 150 and above. Kohli now has 9 scores of 150+ while captaining India, which is 1 more than Bradman’s tally. Michael Clarke, Mahela Jayawardene, Brian Lara and Graeme Smith are next on the list with 7 scores of 150+ each as captain.
Virat Kohli now also has scored most Test runs as an Indian captain, going past Sunil Gavaskar who scored 2426 runs.
In what is his 50th Test as captain, Kohli also joined the likes of Stephen Fleming, Alastair Cook and Steve Waugh as only the 4th ever captain to score a century in his 50th game at the helm.
Among players with most Test centuries as captain, Kohli now lies at the joint-2nd position with 19 hundreds. Graeme Smith (25), Ricky Ponting (19), Allan Border and Steve Smith (15 each) complete the top-5 such captains.
Virat also surpassed Sachin Tendulkar’s Test career average on his way to 150 in Pune. Kohli’s career average at the time of writing this piece was 54.34 – just a notch above Tendulkar’s 53.78. However
After the 138-run stand for the second wicket between centurion Mayank Agarwal and Cheteshwar Pujara on the opening day, it was the turn of Kohli and Rahane to turn the screw on South Africa with a partnership of 178.
Armed with the second new ball, which was about five overs old, Kagiso Rabada and Vernon Philander started off strongly to keep the batsmen on their toes.
There were not many scoring opportunities provided by the fast bowlers and most runs during the first 30 minutes came off the edge of the bat.
The frustrating wait for a breakthrough continued for the South Africans as Kohli, who was dropped on three by spinner Keshav Maharaj off his own bowling on Thursday, had at least three edges elude the fielder behind the wicket.
Once the ball had lost a bit of shine and the pitch some movement, Kohli opened up and converted his knock into a hundred in his fifth test of 2019.
Trademark drives on both sides of the wicket flowed from the right-hander’s bat as India piled on the runs in their first innings on a surface expected to assist the slow bowlers more as the match progressed.
A sublime straight-driven boundary off Philander brought up the hundred for Kohli, who also has 43 tons in the 50-over format.