Ian Chappell
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Former Australia captain, now a cricket commentator and columnist

The king and his heir

As Tendulkar prepares to walk into the sunset, Virat Kohli is set to become the Indian batsman opposition bowlers fear the most

Ian Chappell

November 3, 2013

Comments: 122 | Text size: A | A

Virat Kohli has a chat with Sachin Tendulkar, Rajkot, December 14, 2009
Tendulkar and Kohli both sparkled early in their careers in Australia © Associated Press
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Players/Officials: Sachin Tendulkar | Virat Kohli
Teams: India

With Sachin Tendulkar on the verge of retirement, Australian bowlers, past and present, must be sighing with relief that the torment is nearly over.

Those expressions of relief are a bit premature. Virat Kohli's two recent centuries, plundered in winning Indian causes, were eerily similar and a stark reminder of Tendulkar's feat against Australia in Sharjah in 1997-98. Considering the circumstances - Tendulkar's first hundred in Sharjah was scored in a game India had to perform exceptionally well in to advance to the final, while the second came in the final to pull off an extraordinary win - they were the two best ODI innings I saw Tendulkar play.

He tore into an Australian attack that included Shane Warne, and in both innings Tendulkar scored at better than a run a ball in an era when that wasn't an everyday occurrence. In the first of those two brilliant knocks, India had a certain figure to reach in order to ensure an appearance in the final even if they eventually lost the match to Australia. Not satisfied with just guiding his side into the final, Tendulkar's competitive instincts had been aroused and he was in hot pursuit of victory when he was dismissed.

That's where Kohli went one better than Tendulkar. Both his imperious centuries ended in unlikely Indian victories. That's not to say Kohli is a better player than Tendulkar, but he has acquired the knack of being at the crease when the winning runs are hit in extraordinarily difficult chases.

He also did it at Bellerive in a chase against Sri Lanka that was similar to Tendulkar's first century against Australia in Sharjah. This time India needed to win inside 40 overs to retain any hope of a spot in the CB Series finals. Kohli achieved this aim comfortably with a scintillating unbeaten century.

So many times did Tendulkar shred Australian attacks that it's difficult to choose the best of those Test innings, but two in his early days were crucial to his legend.

First, there was his hundred at the SCG in 1991-92, which set in motion a love affair with the ground. That was bettered two Tests later by a remarkable century on the bouncy WACA pitch. A short man of just 18 years, coming from a country renowned for low-bouncing pitches to a ground unique for steep lift off a length, had no trouble taming a rampant Australian pace attack.

Tendulkar, calm and calculating, is reserved more by circumstance than nature. Kohli, on the other hand, is an extrovert who wears his heart on his sleeve

Tendulkar was already a star, but this remarkable performance ensured the world would understand that this was a batsman out of the box.

To continue the Tendulkar-Kohli similarities, it was an innings in Perth by the younger batsman that enhanced his self-belief at Test level. Kohli didn't make a hundred at the WACA, but his confidence-building 75 in the second innings was a shining jewel in the rubble of India's performance; this he followed up with a century in his next Test innings.

Like so many overseas batsmen before him, a century in Australia was the achievement that convinced Kohli he had arrived as a Test player. Since then he hasn't looked back, and he's now set to take over not only Tendulkar's coveted No. 4 spot but also his mantle as the Indian player opponents most want out.

Despite those similarities, there's much that's different. Kohli started his career at a much more advanced age than the child prodigy and they are totally dissimilar in temperament. Tendulkar, calm and calculating, is reserved more by circumstance than nature. Kohli, on the other hand, is an extrovert who wears his heart on his sleeve, and you wonder if that won't hurt him when he endures a rough trot. The Indian fan's obsession with "star culture" can be a two-edged sword.

For the moment, Kohli's passion fuels his play, and in his more flamboyant innings it appears that there's nothing he can't achieve. As a likely future Indian captain, he may have to rein in outwardly emotional displays. In the meantime, his batting is there to be savoured and enjoyed - that is, if you are not an Australian bowler. Long remember the king for he's (nearly) gone; hail the prince, because he's still around to torment bowlers.

Former Australia captain Ian Chappell is now a cricket commentator for Channel 9, and a columnist

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Posted by IPSY on (November 9, 2013, 14:40 GMT)

Ian, Let me ask you this question: Who was putting who under pressure over the years? "Was it India's 1.2 Billion people putting Sachin under pressure, or, he putting them under pressure", when he batted? Based on the voices I'm hearing from the Indian public, I say without apology, that "it was Sachin who was putting the people of India under pressure" - not the other way around. When you played Mr Chappell, what used to put you under pressure? Wasn't it the need to perform well to maintain your place in the team? But you know that since Sachin made the Indian team, his case has always been different, to any other member of any team sport in the world - he never had to worry about his place in the team - he knew he could not be dropped and 1.2 Bill were praying for him! So he had to be most confident! Hence, he had no reason other than his short comings to blame, when he performed poorly. But the Indian public has always been unfairly used as his scapegoat for his short comings! WHY?

Posted by jay57870 on (November 7, 2013, 12:50 GMT)

When Tendulkar reached the 100 100s milestone last year, David Frith proclaimed: "Hail the boy king Tendulkar"! His opening para: "Cricket is full of surprises. But it really and truly is almost beyond belief that a cricketer can chalk up one hundred scores of 100 or more in international matches"! Sachin's record is not a flawed statistic. Frith should know: He is the founding editor of Wisden Cricket Monthly & a reputed cricket historian/writer. He's a Wisden authority, ask him why English County stats are not considered international. Obviously what counts are matches played by international teams who are Full Members of ICC & a few Associate/Affiliate members. It is what it is! Yes, Sachin's played more Tests & ODIs than anyone else. It's because of his phenomenal Staying Power: he's played through pain & injury, slumps & fatigue, media scrutiny & huge public expectations. That's precisely why he's outlasted his rivals & risen to the top. Beyond belief. It is what it is!!

Posted by swarzi on (November 7, 2013, 7:12 GMT)

jay57870, So whom did you or anyone else expected to score the first double 100 in ODIs? Tendulkar is the man who has played tons more ODIs than anyone else, and opening the batting - the only position where it seems that anyone may be able to do so - except an opener gets out very early. This touted 100 international 100s is a flawed statistic! So many people scored what could be considered 100 international 100s before. How can a 100 against Namibia or Kenya could be more international than a 100 scored against any English County bowling attack in the 70s and 80s with those mixed bowling attacks, that may have combined any of Marshall+Bothom+Bedi, or Lilee+Imran+Gibbs, etc? Hence, which of Tendulkar's 100s against Namibia, or Kenya or Bangladesh could be compared to a 100 made in a county match those days? You know what, if I had come from out of space for the last 3 years and was told that Tendulkar is one of the great batsmen in the sport of cricket, I wouldn't recommend cricket!

Posted by jay57870 on (November 7, 2013, 3:02 GMT)

Chappelli & his ilk are still in denial. Ian was miffed that his brother Greg had to resign as India's coach in 2007 after a disastrous 2-year tenure. One can see how Ian's sibling sentiments got the better of him: He had no business asking Tendulkar to quit. The Indian selectors had full faith in Sachin. His record speaks for itself over the past 6-7 years: He's won the ICC Cricketer of the Year award. He's the first man to score a double ton in ODIs. He scored the most runs for India to help it win WC2011. He's the first man to score 100 international centuries. Above all, he's a team player & achieved it all with humility, loyalty & integrity! The reputed cricket historian David Frith proclaimed: "It is tempting to mark down Bradman and Tendulkar as the finest two batsmen who ever lived"! TIME Magazine declared: "We have had champions ... legends, but we have never had another Sachin Tendulkar and we never will"! And Yes: India's king was bestowed the Order of Australia honour!!

Posted by IPSY on (November 6, 2013, 20:12 GMT)

jay57870, I've never seen Chappell writing anything UNFAIR about Tendulkar! In 2007, when he wrote," Tendulkar has become a shadow of his former self in the last THREE or FOUR years and has looked like a player trying to "eke out a career", Chappell was totally correct! That time SRT should have been dropped! His performance among the 8 best teams in the world was abysmal: In nearly 50 innings he had an average in the low 30s, and couldn't score a single 100 against them, save a shaky one against Sri Lanka! In other words, he looked much worse then, than he looks now for the past THREE YEARS against the best! So why you think Ian was wrong to advise that he be dropped? That's what would have happened to every other player in the world! And I don't think he did anything FOR INDIA since, just for himself - that's' why I don't rate him the heights some want to. Ian said that he's "INDIA'S" KING - not any one else's! Warne's Schin-Lara analysis must be taken with a grain of salt! Cont'd:

Posted by Dhanno on (November 6, 2013, 18:22 GMT)

FTB. Yes, that is the future of all cricketers, how they will be judged. For Kohli to come near SRT, he will have to score hundreds in austraia/ SA/ England in test series. Loads of runs in test arena, against handful of top teams with no excuses of how often tests will be played (in future they would go down, india trumpeting the view that tests are irrelevant which will be based on knowledge and realization that no-1 ranking in tests is nigh impossible for india anymore). ODIs, they are irrelevant. SRT along with jayasuriya, gilly and others revolutionized ODIs in 1990, just like Sir Viv had his stranglehold on the format 10-15 years earlier. Now rohit sharmas can hit double hundred, any performance in ODIS can be only taken with grain of salt

Posted by alarky on (November 6, 2013, 13:02 GMT)

CherryWood_Champion, With all due respect to the Gt Shane Warne, he's the last cricketer you should quote - his behaviour was poor as a player! Too, Warne was the first overseas player to be made captain in the corruption plagued IPL! In fact, he was Rajastan Royals first Captain for quite a few years. Do you know that he withdrew that silly statement since he stopped playing IPL cricket? You should also know he said that about Lara, because Lara is the only batsman who made the Australian selectors dropped him unceremoniously in the WI in 1999 - the only time that he was ever dropped in his long illustrious career. Yes, Lara murdered him here in the Caribbean, the way he has never been to the day of his retirement. As usual, I base my contributions on facts, which you can always look up! Remember, the main difference between Lara and Sachin is that Sachin always has a well oiled PR machine - Lara's bat was his only PR mechanism! We all know why some of these guys root for Sachin!

Posted by CherryWood_Champion on (November 6, 2013, 8:24 GMT)

For me a player is considered best if he masters/conquers his opposition in their own backyard. Because the conditions are different and alien to them. As some of the Aussies mentioned here on the discussion board, lets take only Tests ( Because none of them can come close to Tendulkar in ODIs)

First Lets do Ricky ... on how well he did against India in India

Ricky Ponting: Tests:( On flat Indian tracks against a mediocre Indian bowling ) - Averages 26.48 with with just one century

Now lets see Tendulkar against Aussies in Australia ... Tests:( In Australia on green/bouncy tracks ) - Averages 53.20 with 6 centuries

Here are the statements of top two cricketers from Australia ... This should pretty much close the debate of Ricky vs Sachin. Don Bradman: "Now I never saw myself play, but I feel that this player is playing much the same as I used to play". Australian spin legend Shane Warne: "Tendulkar is, in my time, the best player without a doubt -- daylight second, Lara third".

Posted by jay57870 on (November 6, 2013, 2:23 GMT)

Ian - What an about-face! Now Chappelli (or his ghostwriter) is singing the praises of The Little Master! The same Chappelli who issued Tendulkar a silly "Mirror, Mirror on the wall" dictum to retire in March 2007! And hounded him for years with his half-baked sermon on "use-by-dates"! The High Priest of Cricket is wrong: missed the mark by 6.5+ years!! Now he anoints Tendulkar as "The king and (Kohli) his heir"! The same Chappelli who anointed Duminy as the "Next Big Thing" & Sehwag as "The New Bradman"! Oops! Beware of Chappelli's prophesies on Kohli or Pujara or Rohit or Chand. Still Ian's right about "India's riches, Australia's need": there's Indian talent aplenty to fill the void. But it's futile to single out anyone as the heir, apparent or presumptive. Yes, Sachin is their unquestioned role model & champion. As Kohli proclaimed after the WC2011 triumph: "Tendulkar has carried the burden of the nation for 21 years (24 now). It was time we carried him"! That says it all, Ian!!

Posted by AQ13 on (November 5, 2013, 22:54 GMT)

Kohli is a great player(if he isnt facing junaid khan b/c then he turns into a cry baby who doesnt score)

Posted by jango_moh on (November 5, 2013, 22:28 GMT)

@alarky... "His average of 34 IN ASTRALIA is testimony to the fact that when there is equal opportunity for both bowler and batsman, Tendulkar is found wanting! CONT'D:"... now you are suddenly looking at ODIs for a batsman's prowess??? here are sachin's stats against aus in tests from 1991 to 2012... in Australia 1991-2012 20 38 4 1809 241* 53.20 6 7... avg is 53.20, also look at sachin's home and away record in tests... he averages 55 away and 53 at home.... lets compare that to your hero, mr ponting (who i admire btw)... his away record is 11 points less than his home record.... Give credit where its due!!!!!

Posted by alarky on (November 5, 2013, 13:52 GMT)

CONT'D: Ian, in addition, the point you made about Sachin's innings in Sharjah that was against an attack "that included Warne" is one of the reasons why I have reservations about Warne being the best ever leg spinner. His record is too poor on the subcontinent. He couldn't bowl to subcontinent guys on the subcontinent! And he did poorly many times when Mc Grath wasn't there to take charge. Tendulkar was in his third year of test cricket when he made those two 100s in Australia. So though he was young, he had some experience - and none of the bowlers in those matches were of any particular reputation - in fact, one of them knew that he was a better umpire than a bowler, so he gave up the ball and took the coat very early. The same experience argument is made about Kholi's more matured age as against Sachin's youth. Once you're a normal adult, people of similar experience would perform at the same level, most times, regardless of age. Kholi has done enough to prove he's better in ODIs.

Posted by alarky on (November 5, 2013, 13:28 GMT)

Ian, EVERY Indian batsman or Subcontinent batsman has taken advantage of nearly every bowler on those benign ODI pitches in India and Sharjah. Hence, I agree that you are making too much out of Tendulkar's exploits. Look, no Australian bowling has ever been treated the way that Dhawan, Kholi, Rohit and Dhoni treated them this last series, but as usual IN INDIA!! So it is almost inevitable that bowlers would be humiliated there! So why resurrect Tendulkar's few innings as though it's just he who has done well against the Australians? I too agree that your article lacked balance since you did not mention Sachin's abysmal performances in ODIs IN AUSTRALIA! You should have let your readers know that he never scored a 100 against Mc Grath and Warne IN AUSTRALIA. In fact, his only score of 100 was in 2008 - a few years ago! His average of 34 IN ASTRALIA is testimony to the fact that when there is equal opportunity for both bowler and batsman, Tendulkar is found wanting! CONT'D:

Posted by   on (November 5, 2013, 13:12 GMT)

In my view, Pujara can be considered as a replacement for Dravid, Shikhar Dhawan for Ganguly, Virat Kohli for Tendulkar and Rohit Sharma for VVS. That said it is too early to seal the deal. They have to prove themselves overseas,more so in seaming, bouncy conditions. Let us see if Virat can keep up the standards he has set for himself. The real test will be when he goes through a bad phase. We have a habit of burdening Sachin with everything and I hope Kohli doesnt have to hold this burden and expectations.

Posted by   on (November 5, 2013, 0:43 GMT)

Ian Chappell says Virat's hundreds at Jaipur and Nagpur were similar to Sachin's double whammy at Sharjah in 1998. Well, I disagree. You don't have to look too much into it except the scorecard. Sachin scored 143 helping India to qualify for the Finals, the next best in the inns was - 35 by Nayan Mongia. In the Final, Sachin scored 134 with the next best being Azhar's 58. These two hundreds were Sachin's greatest one day knocks ever. Both in Jaipur and Nagpur, Virat was the 2nd centurion in the Indian inns. If there's one inns that could come close to Sachin's Sharjah heroics, it's Virat's Hobart Hurricane! That was just spectacular, especially the way he creamed Malinga with disdain.

Posted by swarzi on (November 4, 2013, 23:03 GMT)

Ian, I think that you're very unfair to Australian bowlers! In fact, I thought that you were a bit sterner about what constitutes rel cricket. How come you are mocking the Australian bowlers about their performances against Tendulkar on those bowlers grave yards that they prepare in India and Sharja? You are talking as though only the Australian bowlers who usually get hammered in India and Sharja! This last match, India made 383; and Australia almost made it! I feel if Bailey didn't run himself out, Australia would have won the match! I think you are overly hard on the Aussies because of this statistic which you did not know about, before you wrote: Do you know that in Tendulkar's 24 years playing ODIs against Australia IN AUSTRALUA, his AVERAGE IS ONLY 34, and he only scored a SINGLE 100 there, in 2008 - nineteen years after he made his debut. The first year after Mc Grath and Warne retired leaving Australiawithout a world class bowling attack ever since! Bang chased down 300 today!

Posted by ggsg on (November 4, 2013, 21:58 GMT)

MR. throughthelense please check some stats yourself. For u heres some stats about SACHIN TENDULKAR ODI stats v/s Aus, RSA, WI, Eng, NZ in oppostion home and neutral venue. M 145 Runs 5172 ave 39.18 with strike rate of 80.22 10-100s & 28-50s. now let break down aganst these country at oppostion home and neutral venue. agianst Aus M 41 runs 1516 ave 38.87 strike rate 81.46 with 5-100s 6-50s. NZ M 26 runs 929 ave 38.70 Stike rate 95.28 1-100s 6-50s. Eng M 21 runs 824 ave 43.36 Strike rate 86.37 1-100s 6-50s. RSA M 35 runs 1007 ave 28.77 strike rate 68.27 1-100s 4-50s ( Sachin only batting ave below 30 and strike rate below 75) WI M 22 Runs 896 ave 59.63 Strike Rate 75.80 2-100s 6-50s. Its given being from India he would have played more matches in india infact it would be right to say lara ponting waugh taylor....... all greats would have played in there home country. throughthelense i hope u got the stats. if u want i can break down sachins test matches too.

Posted by Cricketfan11111 on (November 4, 2013, 19:44 GMT)

India is the team which plays fewest T20Is. IPL is fun and entertainment played by pick and mix teams. Those who think india cares little about test cricket are mistaken. Every talented Indian player's ultimate goal is to play test cricket. Yuvraj and Raina tried their best. Rohit Sharma has been waiting for eternity. Kohli at this young age has already cemented his place in the test team. With his talent Kohli can only grow and get better.

Posted by amitksah on (November 4, 2013, 17:57 GMT)

@VincentVas: I dont want to say anything against legends like lara, ponting an dravid, but they too were given long rope before retirement and sachin too has played many match saving and winning knock in 2nd innings, it's just our memory is bad and we keep forgetting those. If you want to know more then you can use espncricinfo stats query. I dont want to put all those result here. But who ever wants to know can go to http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/player/35320.html?class=1;filter=advanced;type=batting and set there parameters and see it by own.

Posted by RIPSRT on (November 4, 2013, 16:27 GMT)

At present the ICC Rankings for the best Test Batsmen ranks Kohli @ 22 (Jointly with D M Bravo) with 634 points, the next batsman is SRT @24 with 632 Points! Close call. Career best for Kohli is 648 points which he attained in March this year and that of Tendulkar is 898, way back in Feb 2002. Still 250 points to gain. Long way to go for Kohli and it would be good to see him travese this path. Test cricket is where finally the boys will be separated from men. Sachin still after 24 years of cricket, still after endless comparisons with who's who of world cricket is being compared when he is two tests away from hanging his boots, take a break, at least for last now that he himself is taking one! Thanks Sachin for the memories which will last forever! Never before....Never Again

Posted by jackiethepen on (November 4, 2013, 16:21 GMT)

Too early surely to say Kohli is taking on the mantle of Tendulkar because of exceptional success in ODIs? Kohli has only played 18 Tests averaging 41 with 4 centuries. After Bell played 18 Tests he averaged 47 with 5 centuries. Bell was always over-criticised by our media. At least Kohli is spared that kind of negative English-style denigration. If Kohli reins in his temper he will go on to have a fine Test career. He reminds me of KP at the start of his career. But India need to put Test cricket more to the forefront if he is going to develop as a player. Otherwise he will stay in t20 mode for too long.

Posted by amitchris on (November 4, 2013, 16:07 GMT)

When we compare Sachin and Kohli, we tend to forget that they both played in a different era. Those who have not seen Indian team of 90s, we were a mediocre, timid team, especially when we traveled outside subcontinent. It was Sachin who gave us the self belief and confidence to stand and score against fast bowling in such conditions. Kohli, Dhawan, Rohit, even Yuvraj are the products of that self belief that Sachin (and later on Dravid, Laxman, Ganguli) instilled. So, perhaps, sachin might not have won as many games as Kohli. But we need to recognize that Cricket is a team sports. Team cannot consistently win on a single player's performance over the time. Sachin have received so much of respect and accolade from Australia and England because he is consistently performed there when every one else failed.

Posted by throughthelense on (November 4, 2013, 14:06 GMT)

Chappel has not taken into account the fact that out of the 87 matches Sachin has played in Australia, South Africa, England and New Zealand comnbined, he averages just over 33 with a strike rate in the late 60s, and early 70s, compared to his career strike rate of 86. He has scored 45 of his ODI hundreds on Asian soil, as well as against minnows like Namibia, Kenya and Zimbabwe (averages 107 in 10 ODIs). He has scored two hundreds batting at No.4. Kohli is miles ahead of Sachin as a match winner, and Sachin fans please use statistics to know the truth. Don't rely on commentators alone.

Posted by   on (November 4, 2013, 13:45 GMT)

Kohli is a match winner and a game changer, Sachin scored lots of runs yes but was never really feared so much. I disagree with this Article because Kohli actually stays till thje last ball has been bowled unlike Sachin who has never ever survived towards the end of the innings, now does SAchin's record state he has won matches for India Single Handedly like Kohli...no matter what the future lies I have more respect for Kohli as a player than Tendulkar (though it is unfair to compare at this point. Kohli obliterated the Pak bowling attack in the last Asia cup (pak bowling being one of the best in the world). When was the last time Sachin single handedly won a match for India vs Pak, he has scored runs YES but has never singlehandedly won a match for India against Pak..EVER !

Posted by   on (November 4, 2013, 11:36 GMT)

we Indians are fools. there is a great Article about Sachin n Virat and we are taking sides. some are bitching about Sach n some about Virat. its pathetic guys!! same had been done numerous times between Sach n Dravid. For god's sake, stop it. stop being an expert of game when you can't match heights of these geniuses. Tendulkar was the Best player n Kohli will be the one in some time. Full Stop!!

Posted by   on (November 4, 2013, 10:35 GMT)

let him face steyn & co in RSA and prove . moreover both his amazing centuries came when dawan and rohit had set a grt platform against the hapless aussie bowlers on flat roads .... when faulkner can hit a 100 in 57 balls coming after 6 wkts have fallen for 138 it shows wat kinda pitches we r playing on ....

Posted by VincentVas on (November 4, 2013, 10:29 GMT)

Unfortunately Indian supporters have placed ST on too high a pedestal and have bestow on him God like status. They forget he's mortal, and over-egg his achievements. The number of runs he has scored in all formats of the game are indisputable, but one should look beyond statistics. His 2nd innings scores do not compare with the 2nd innings scores of contempories like Ponting and Lara, or his compatriot Dravid. These three players played more game changing innings, either to win or save matches than ST. They also knew when to call it a day, unlike ST who has batted like an average lower middle order batsman for the last two years. This has been detrimental to the Indian team in two ways. 1) It has deprived a young player a spot in the side. 2) Young players, like Indian fans, revere him to the extent that they believe he's still perfect. So what must be the effect on them when they watched his recent struggles from the non-strikers end;they must feel that if he struggles, so will they.

Posted by   on (November 4, 2013, 9:14 GMT)

His hunger for runs,his attitude,his class shows that he is world class top order batsman! He scored 11 tons while chasing & india won all of these ! Never seen sucha a top class chaser ! He is not next sachin tendulkar but first virat kohli ! Take a bow virat !!

Posted by   on (November 4, 2013, 8:34 GMT)

The good thing about Virat is that he is an original. He has absolutely no influence of Sachin in his batting, except perhaps the hunger for runs. He is Virat Kohli No. 1 and not Sachin no.2. Many people forget that the original Sachin clone or Sachin no.2 was Virendar Sehwag. It is one of the few cases when the clone often went on to overshadow the original.

Posted by CricketChat on (November 4, 2013, 6:06 GMT)

Yes, of all the younger generation batsmen, Kohli seems most capable to fill in loss of SRT. He has achieved a lot of success in short formats in the sub-continent.

Posted by smudgeon on (November 4, 2013, 5:47 GMT)

He's good, yes...but let's see what he actually does in Tests before we start talking about bowlers be scared of him, huh? So far, he hasn't exactly buckled any swashes or saved a Test series.

Posted by deoshatwar on (November 4, 2013, 5:15 GMT)

It is rare, and rightly so, for Ian to be so full of praise for some player. It is about Kohli, as for Tendulkar you will praise, period. We, and above all, Tendulkar will be glad if Kohli can really 'torment' Aussie bowlers. As of now, he looks like a 'work in progress' towards that situation. Kohli might be able to achieve that if Dhawan, Pujara, Rohit and Co. manage to blunt that attack. Great article though, by all means!

Posted by   on (November 4, 2013, 1:31 GMT)

Kohli hasn't played in England or RSA yet I think.... Plus Sachin played in an era of better bowlers... Worst wickets and also Sachin had nothing till Ganguly and Dravid arrived.... Kohli had a great foundation and I'd like to see how he does oversees on a constant basis.. I agree with Abhinav... We'll talk in 15 years.

Posted by   on (November 4, 2013, 0:44 GMT)

Yes Kohli is a great batsman and one day he will become a legend but if he want to become like 'the great sachin' then he should control his temper and if people regard sachin as a greatest cricketer then they also regard him as a great human being.

Posted by NareshPodi on (November 4, 2013, 0:27 GMT)

For all those who praise Sachin over Kohli, (The worst ways to praise Sachin over Kohli).If you are a true INDIAN,you never say these kind of excuses.I am not saying Sachin is not great but you must accept Kohli's talent.Some of you are misunderstanding Kohli's consistency and Technique. 1.Kohli didn't played in Sachin's time.But I say, Sachin also played along with Kohli for more than 4 years, then where was the match winning performance? 2. Flat pitches.Most of the centuries made by Sachin were made on Asian pitches only.Check again.3.Not so great bowlers. Did Sachin played any fastest century on these bowlers or on these flat pitches.How can you think Kohli wouldn't perform against those great bowlers.Only Sachin played against those great bowlers and made century among all countries?.The same reasons apply when you compare Sachin with Bradman(But You never remember all these).

Tell me one good reason to demotivate the young player who is helping India to taste unimaginable wins

Posted by Naresh28 on (November 3, 2013, 22:53 GMT)

The INDIAN selectors have done a splendid job so far in shaping the future team. They should not be swayed in finding the ideal NO 4for team India. We the fans may feel that Kohli is the best but lets leave the decision to them. So far it looks like Dhawan, Rohit, Pujara and Kohli

Posted by BillyCC on (November 3, 2013, 22:15 GMT)

A bloke with a test average of 42 at the age of 25 and having only played 18 tests isn't likely to strike fear into the hearts of anyone. Let's see how he goes in South Africa.

Posted by rakon_me on (November 3, 2013, 20:23 GMT)

@nampally.. the bangalore ground has remained the same ..whether it is the pitch or the size of the ground...During world cup 2011, india scored 338 with sachin scoring a great century and england tied the game by scoring 338 as well...back then no one talked about the size of the ground even though both teams scored heavily...Its is just that with the advent of T20 , batsmen have become better and Virat is a great example.... @Peter_Jones....By your logic, Ajit agarkar scored a test century at Lords ....does it mean the pitch was flat or england bowlers were trash...Virat Kohli will be an all time great and you will see him score everywhere...

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 19:49 GMT)

those who are commenting that Kohli has not scored against quality bowling haven't noticed that he as socred runs against best bowlers of the current era such as Swan, Ajmaal, Malinga, Johnson and he targets the best bowler of the opposition team and tears them apart, only bowler left is Styne and Anderson whom he has not faced in a complete series and it would be interesting how he plays Styne in upcoming Southafrica series

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 19:49 GMT)

The rising socio-economic status of INDIA is elevating the standard of INDIAN cricket. Smothering colonial period(dark age) of INDIA had really put INDIA backward in all aspects. The original good DNA of INDIAN race is coming out gloriously once the socio-economic conditions are getting better around. For example- The average height of an INDIAN man has gone up by 2-3 inches with in 30-40 years. You can look at the body language of current Indian players, they are more positive with chin up head straight. Look at the old INDIAN cricket team. Gradually, INDIA will pick up to play in grassy pitches as well. Wait and see.

Posted by NCP1 on (November 3, 2013, 19:41 GMT)

Pointless comparing Kohli to Sachin, different era, different Indian team, different bowlers, pitches etc etc. Sachin is the greatest Batsman India have produced and among the best in he world we have seen recently. Kohli appears to be one of the better batsman India have produced who will go on to become a great player we all hope. He has the technique to score in test matches as well. Remember Pujara, Dhawan, Rohit and Dhoni are also getting better and better. India will need few more good batsman and bowlers to be the best team.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 19:20 GMT)

ppl sayin virat did not face the greats like mc grath..wasim..walsh n all...well i wud say if he had faced he wud adjusted to dem too..dats how da game is...may be den 250 was a par score he myt hav scored 70s but a player wid solid defence n effortless strokes always succeeds...say amla say saeed anwar...coming to sachin i remmber we had only one ODI batsmen worth watching before yuvrajs n dhonis grew...

Posted by cricraz on (November 3, 2013, 19:17 GMT)

Every generation thinks that their generation was the best there ever was. Batsman and bowlers have gotten better in the last 10-15 yrs. Wasim, Ambrose, Mcgrath and Warne would have been taken to cleaners just like the present day bowlers by batsman like Virat, ABD and Gayle. The T20 format has improved shotmaking and audacity of batsman to try shots they would have never tried in the 80's or 90's. The bowlers are always on the back foot because players play the reverse sweep, ramp shot, helicopter shot and any bowler who has been torched for runs tries something different and loses his line and accuracy. Wasim, Waqar, Ambrose would have had the same belting as Dale Steyn in T20. If batting on flat track is not given due credit, bowlers on green tops should not be given due credit as well because they can only take wickets on green tops and with red cherry!!

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 19:16 GMT)

There are few dissimilarities too, like Tendulkar got centuries in test matches first, then gradually he started getting them in ODIs. Tendulkar's days were sheer one man show days. Indian team was struggling in those days, India has just won a single game out of its 24 wins that year in which tendulkar has not performed with bat. Tendulkar's bowling skills were also noteworthy, a spinner, a medium pace,everything he has in those days. After injury in 1998-99 he reduced his bowling & later even stopped that. But yes one thing I like more about Kohli his attitude & constant appetite of learning. He will be a great test player in future, definitely he is better than many others in Indian team & deserve to bat at 4-5 after Tendulkar's retirement.

Posted by Nampally on (November 3, 2013, 19:09 GMT)

@Amra: Sorry, My mistake- My apologies for the maths- You are right it should have read 144(69%) not 204. I was just going by my memory. I have just checked the numbers again. Maxwell's numbers are 54 out of 60(90%) ; Faulkner's are 100 out of 116 (86%) & Watson's are 44 out of 49 (89%) - in boundaries & 6's. The short boundary makes a high percentage of 4's & 6's in the total. That is the main focus. Are these grounds complying with the boundary distance as per ICC regulations. This is relevant issue when you compare the runs scored by 2 players in different Eras. ICC Rule changes does not call for a short boundary!

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 18:37 GMT)

@Peter_Jones2012 - You are trying to belittle Indian batsmen who have battered Australian bowlers (who are better than Indian bowlers) on flat tracks. Remember - in the same series, Australian batsmen have not been able to set sufficiently tough targets / cross targets set by Indian batsmen, against an inferior bowling attack than what the Indians faced - To belittle Indian batsmen, you say even Faulkner was able to get a 100 here. what does that make Australian batting lineup which scored fewer runs in total, even after giving them the benefit of Faulkner's runs ?

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 18:31 GMT)

@Ravi Ganga How about taking Virat Kohli's overseas records? He is a very good finisher but he has arrived in the era of T20 cricket, flat pitches, smaller grounds and the bowlers of sachin's era were much much better then today's bowlers. There is no comparision to be made here. We will talk about it when virat completes 20 years in the game

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 18:25 GMT)

No matter how many runs Virat scores, he cannot be compared to Tendulkar unless he plays against bowlers in the class of Wasim, Glen, Shane class...

Unfortunately, these kind of bowlers have become a rare breed, and with pitches like those made in India, there is no hope for bat-bowl contest. In other words, if Rohit, Virat score triple centuries each, it would not mean much except underline the death of bowling in this era.

Posted by Srini_Chennai on (November 3, 2013, 18:21 GMT)

Excellent article by Ian. Becoming the best batsman in your side at the age of 24 is just amazing. As a ODI cricketer, he is already a star. As a test cricketer, he just making his way and I'm sure couple of good knocks in Perth, Johannesburg, Durban and Lord's will go a long way in making Kohli one of the most feared batsmen in the world.

Posted by SL-USA-Lions on (November 3, 2013, 18:15 GMT)

Honestly Virat is a Gem... He has the ability and skill to be as great as Sachin... Time and Talent are on his side... Where as a Lara just ran out of time...

He has a slight arrogance about him... But in a way who wouldn't have one when one knows HIMSELF THAT HE'S THAT GOOD. We can't be judgmental and Hypocrites when we ourselves would be the same...

The Bottom line is this: Talking about Sub par bowling, Dead Indian wickets and other playing aspects is redundant because these same conditions were valid for his contemporaries and peers. But he's showing a class above the rest.

These so called factors are the Norm these days. New Fielding rules, Bowling restrictions and the size & quality of pitches are factors we can't change as spectators these days. Given all these factors he's performing in a commendable manner.

I respect his Talent, Charisma and fighting spirit... So many teams are lacking quality like him these days. Some just show up FOR THE MONEY.


Posted by vish2020 on (November 3, 2013, 17:42 GMT)

Sachin played and scored against Warne, Mcgrath, Gillespie etc. Best of the best! Virat is scoring against weaker opponents so he is way far off sachin and virat will be first to admit it but I love your article Ian. Always, have good time reading it.

Posted by amra on (November 3, 2013, 17:37 GMT)

@Nampally - I agree that we should not compare Sachin and Virat. But please use proper logic to support your argument. I had heard of Lies, Damned Lies and Statistics. You have added Statistical lies to this. 12 4's and 16 6's adds us to 144 not 204.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 17:31 GMT)

Kohli hasn't achieved much in Test Cricket, but his ODI record is just fantastic. One thing that Virat has in his favor is the flat pitches of the current era. Sachin did not have that in his time, especially in the 90s. Anyway, Kohli's done well in the shorter format around the world in almost all conditions. He has 17 hundreds and he's not even 25 yet! However, if Kohli wants to be remembered as one of the greats of the game, he has to succeed in tests. So far, he has been just okay in the longer version, and has a long, long way to go. I am eager to see how he does in South Africa. Tendulkar was outstanding in both formats and is one of the greatest batsmen of all-time.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 17:26 GMT)

I would rate Virat a few notches better than Sachin. This is a player who actually "finishes" matches. He has the passion, doesn't give an inch to the opposition - verbally or non-verbally, and calculates, paces his innings really well. He has to replicate his ODI success in Tests, but its safe to say that the Indian team has a real match winner now.

Posted by Brahams on (November 3, 2013, 17:15 GMT)

@Peter_Jones2012, Sorry mater again... you are not very consistent in your analysis.

By your same logic, a lot of bowlers are getting bloated up averages in bowler-friendly countries such as England, SA and Australia. Once they come to India they are exposed - the world knows a lot of such bowlers. Good bowlers such as Steyn are truly great because they have succeeded in places like India (and elsewhere).

So it cuts both ways!

Posted by pitch_curator on (November 3, 2013, 16:50 GMT)

Mr Chappell, you have missed out one similarity. Sachin's father passed away during the 99 world cup and Sachin came back to India for 2 days, and went onto score an emotional century in his next innings. This shows the commitment of the man and his mental control. Virat's father too passed away when he was playing a domestic match. Delhi were in a tough spot at the end of the day, when the news of the bereavement came in and Virat was batting. He came out to bat the next day and scored 90. Only after getting out did he go back home. Most people look at his temper on the field but this incident alone shows what kind of commitment he has for the game. @ Karnawat33 - Dont underestimate Virat's passion for the game . He had some issues with the short ball around 3 seasons back and got out a few times trying to hook/pull. The way he has practiced after those dismissals, you can safely say that he is one of the best players in the Indian test batting line up now against the short balls

Posted by cricketfan1 on (November 3, 2013, 16:46 GMT)

Kohil will score overseas as well. His technique(pull/hook and occasional ducks) agianst short-pitch bowling is better , if not best, among current India batsmen. Other than him, only Dhoni looks comfortable for short-pitch. He stands still , plays late, so in swinging condition he should be good as well. my money on him. He may not break record of SRT (as he started late),but his average may end up higher...

Posted by Nampally on (November 3, 2013, 16:25 GMT)

I am not a fan of comparison of 2 players in different Eras. Tendulkar played his Cricket mostly as an opener with different ODI rules to those existing now. Also the pitches in India are absolutely flat beds even in comparison to those in SRT's time- hardly 15 to 20 years back. In addition the grounds are so small it begs the question: Why are the boundary distance rules not strictly imposed by ICC? R.Sharma scored 209 with 204 runs coming in 12 boundaries + 16 sixers. Similarly Maxwell scored 56 of his 60 runs + Faulkner scored 100 of his 116 runs + Watson scored 46 of his 49 runs in boundaries & Sixers. At least in SRT era the boundaries were of regulation size + one new ball instead of 2 + 5 outfielders instead of 4! So I feel this comparison is not a valid one. Suffice to say both Sachin & Virat are great batsmen. I even rate Dhawan & Rohit Sharma highly as ODI bats competing with Kohli. However Kohli's ability in Tests with rules changed is yet to be found while SRT was Great!

Posted by Andy_Gridley2012 on (November 3, 2013, 16:24 GMT)

Even a lower order batsman like Faulkner scored a rapid fire century. What does it say about Indian pitches, where Indians score most of their runs. No wonder, they get hammered when they play overseas.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 16:21 GMT)

screamingeagle. Bud, I'm not putting him down. Just trying to put things into perspective and make sure, you guys don't' get carried away and start hailing him as God of Cricket etc. There are already many fans from your side of the fence, who think he is better than Clark, Jayawardena, Amla, Sanga and AB etc. In, my opinion, Dravid and Laxman are the most well balanced Indian batsman's. They didn't have it so easy. Kohli has already shown, where there is pace, bounce and movement on the pitch, he struggles. Just look at that series against Pakistan in India. Anyway, I wish him and hope, he fulfills your expectation. Cheers.

Posted by vik56in on (November 3, 2013, 15:52 GMT)

SRT is beyond compare,he is a batsman of the 90s.During his time,bowlers were great and pitches had something for the bowlers.It says something during his time that Mark Waugh,Inzamam and Darryll Cullinan had an average of less than 50 in tests. In the 90s only Lara,Steve Waugh and SRT had averages above 50 in Tests.ICC and the pitches today have completely destroyed bowlers in cricket .They don't have anymore great bowlers other than Steyn.Finally SRT got most of his centuries abroad and Kohli gets them in the flat Indian pitches where even bowlers can make 100 from 60 balls.

Posted by srikanths on (November 3, 2013, 15:47 GMT)

Some one mentions that the Centuries fo SRT in Sharjay was overhyped. If that is true , I would say that Kohli's performances and centuries are also overhyped, When SRT scored thise runs it was more than 50% of the total. In the matches that Kohli scored great foundation was laid by Rohit Sharma and Dhawan.It is a typical Short term memory, we think the recent performances are the best In fact Kohli's centiuries in bellerive was better. If you look at the totals these days, 300 is just walk in the park for most teams. Let us not forget that SRT straddled over a period when par scores went from 225 to 300 over 20+ years and now 350 appears ajust about competitive.How many guys scored centruries in these ODI s.The last match OZ almost won what with Faulkner making a meal of the Indian bowling. Let us just say that Kohli is an extraordinary talent, the best after SRT , but has some distance to traverse before he can lay claim to the "best" title. As Ian Chappelle says, let us enjoy his b

Posted by KARNAWAT33 on (November 3, 2013, 15:34 GMT)

Really. Don't think so. Sachin had class, still has it. Sachin has brains. Sachin is calm. Sachin respects every cricketer. Sachin lives to play for the COUNTRY. Sachin takes losses on the chin and tries to overcome all challenges, which he almost everytime does. SACHIN IS SACHIN. Let, Kohli go abroad, face Steyn in South Africa, Anderson in England, Johnson in Australia, hell give him a Malinga on a bouncy turf in Sri Lanka, a Roach in Winides (if the wicket is not dead), even a Southee or McClenaghan in NZ would do, or a Mortaza in Bangladesh. On slightly green turfs his right leg will go straight towards the square leg umpire. YES, Virat can be the NEXT BIG BRAND in India after Sachin but NO Virat can never ever be even close to being Sachin. (Coming from a DIE HARD RICKY PONTING FAN) #respectTendulkar

Posted by kohli_is_future on (November 3, 2013, 15:23 GMT)

everybody who criticizing kohli please mention a name who is doing half good as kohli at his age.

Posted by screamingeagle on (November 3, 2013, 15:05 GMT)

@Zain khan, he has played only 18 tests, of that 7 overseas. In that he has 1 century. Only played in Aus and WI. Now, why would you compare him with your Amlas, Clarkes and whatnot. Let the guy play and prove himself or fail. then you can put him down, not now. In ODIs he has done pretty well in Aus (373 @ 53) and Eng (370 @ 46). Not so bad in SA either. I would agree he is good in ODIs and not just in India. But tests? We have to wait till he has played enough. All I can say is he is good to watch, he has passion for the game, which is good.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 14:35 GMT)

Long remember the king for he's (nearly) gone; hail the prince, because he's still around to torment bowlers. But Virat has lots of cricket ahead of him for he has to prove on fast and bouncy pitches in South Africa, Australia.

Posted by gandabhai on (November 3, 2013, 14:18 GMT)

Virat has not had the oppertunity to play abroad that often but he has scored heavily whilst chasing under pressure and come up trumps time after time .In exactly the same situation i dought if every top batsmen to have ever played cricket would have scored as heavily .When he gets the chance abroad he will score their too , wait & watch .

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 13:41 GMT)

@Jordanmacmillan88 Have you forgotten the India's 2008 tour of Australia where we not only reached the final of tri series but also won the finals 2-0.So please don't act all invincible.

Posted by renegademike on (November 3, 2013, 13:19 GMT)

i think the 2 centuries in sharjah made by SRT are just way too much hyped. Even in that era the Jayasuriya's-De'silvas-Anwars-waugh's had all been playing that kind of innings. not to forget Aus was bowling a jaded attack without Mc'Grath. earlier that same year ganguly made a century against pak to chase 300 for the first time by India, but there's hardly ever a mention of that. as far as Kohli is concerned there's going to be a very stern test coming up this year when Ind tours abroad.

Posted by Haz95 on (November 3, 2013, 12:47 GMT)

Sachin was truly great but Kohli has so much stuff backing him. To be honest, he's record would only continue in flat Indian pitches. If he can score near enough century's in England, UAE, SA then you an call him good but he can only do it on flat pitches. No offence but just like the rest of the indians, tomorrow we'll see yuvraj, dhoni both making 200s as well on the short boundary Indian pitches. This is spoiling cricket and hard worked records.

Posted by Jordanmacmillan88 on (November 3, 2013, 12:41 GMT)

How often have India crossed the 300 mark against the Aussies in Australia? How many series have they won in Australia? We have a good record against the Indians in the ODI format and this series showed, we can compete and score runs on flat pitches too. But can India do the same when they tour Australia? Don't think so mate. Hope, you remember how your great batsman's played in the last test tour. It's easy batting on dead pitches.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 12:30 GMT)

@Kashi0127 - The likes of Dravid, Laxman and Sehwag became quality during the 2000s (and India also became No.1 in Tests and ODIs as Tendulkar and Sehwag kept winning matches for India around 2008-2010). Speaking of class, there would be no better judge than Bradman himself and we all know which batsman reminded him of himself. And even statistically, Sachin averages more than the likes of Dravid, Laxman, Ganguly, Sehwag, etc in countries such as South Africa, England, Australia, etc.

For me, the best Indian batsmen to watch have been Tendulkar, Laxman, Sehwag and then Dravid (in that order).

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 12:29 GMT)

With flat pitches, small stadiums and even shorter boundary ropes becoming the norm, everyone can start to look like Clark, Cook, Amla and Sanga. But put a little grass on the surface and watch players like Kohli get out cheaply. His series against Pakistan in India showed, how well he plays when there is swing and pace. That's why, he has only scored two centuries outside the subcontinent. A real player is someone, who can score runs everywhere; Clark, Amla and Sanga.

Posted by cricketsubh on (November 3, 2013, 12:22 GMT)

great comment asifrana i agree with u 100 in indias super flat pitches is equal to 30 runs in australia and south africe or england pitches .kohli is a very gud player but it to compair with sachin .kohli need to score in australia england south africa in test to be a great batsmen odi centuries and runs donot count much in this era of cricket with pitches are very flat . specialy in indian condition luk what fulkner do in 7th odi he made 100 in 57 balls and he is a bowler not a batsmen.

Posted by Cricketfan11111 on (November 3, 2013, 12:22 GMT)

Sachin just goes about his buisness. That is playing cricket. Kohli likes to interact with players. Likes an argument or too. Under Dhoni's captaincy he will sure learn to keep his emotions in check. Talent wise why do we have to compare them so early in kohli's career. Tendulkar entertained the world. Now people want to watch Kohli's talent. So far Kohli has filled the void left by Sachin successfully in ODIs. He is maturing as a test batsman. Just wait and watch. He will not disappoint the cricket lovers.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 12:17 GMT)

Great players are those, who can score runs on every surface. Forget about the past but even if you talk about the present, Clark, Cook, Sanga and Amla clearly standout. These folks, were not only successful scoring runs on easy made flat pitches and small stadiums, but they have consistently scored runs in tough conditions as well. They may not have media like India hyping them but they don't need to, because they get the job done. Kohli has only two centuries in non-flat pitches and before you compare him to Lara, Hayden etc pls remember that these guys scored runs everywhere.

Posted by Andy_Gridley2012 on (November 3, 2013, 12:08 GMT)

It's easy scoring runs on flat pitches, small stadiums and where boundary ropes are brought in to ensure high scoring. Indians have always struggled overseas, because they can't handle the pace, bounce and swing. That's why Kohli has only two centuries abroad and why Indians were hammered 0-4 in Aussie. Keep playing on flat decks to inflate your average.

Posted by pvwadekar on (November 3, 2013, 12:08 GMT)

No doubt that Virat is talented but then so it Pujara and also Rohit. Also scoring hundreds on a benign pitch with the rules in favor of the batsmen is one thing but to hundreds on the test tours of SA, NA and England is a totally different ball game & that will be the true test of of weather Virat is is the heir apparent or a pretender.

Posted by Andy_Gridley2012 on (November 3, 2013, 12:04 GMT)

India in Aust in last 8 matches average 224. There record is W31 L42. Where was Kohli and co, during the commonwealth series in Aussie? It's easy scoring runs on concrete types of pitches and small stadiums. Do it where it's tough. Indians can't handle pace and bounce, stats shows it.

Posted by Andy_Gridley2012 on (November 3, 2013, 12:01 GMT)

You are joking right mate!! This fellow is only good at batting on flat decks. Just check his stats. Majority of his tons have been scored in the subcontinent. He has one century in Aussie and one is England, that's it. Indians have a poor record overseas because they can't handle pace and bounce. That's why they were swept during test and came last in the commonwealth series. Ordinary.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 11:47 GMT)

No doubt, Kohli is an unbelievable talent but he should take care of his behaviour on the field. Sachin won the respect of the cricket world both with his attitude and talent.

Posted by fr600 on (November 3, 2013, 11:28 GMT)

Only Indian cricketer I like after Dravid.

Posted by cornered_again on (November 3, 2013, 11:04 GMT)

Amazing fearless cricketer indeed!

Posted by cricketlover_crazy on (November 3, 2013, 10:47 GMT)

Kohli has matured better than Tendulkar in his early one day career, but he is yet to learn to play test cricket. Tendulkar was a class test player and Virat is yet to prove himself against any decent bowling attacks yet outside India. Tendulkar in his early tours to Australia, nzl, england had good scores against very good bowling attacks like Sir Hadlee, mcdermot, merv hughes, devon malcolm, phil defritas to name a few. Virat may eventually break Sachin's one day record, but he wll never come close to Sachin's test record.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 10:20 GMT)

correctly said Ian. India is lucky to have virat after Sachin.Although temprament and technique wise both are different yet fully committed to the cause of the national team.Virat may not be lucky to face the likes of Mcgrath,Akram,wakar,warne,Donald,Ambrose, etc against whom the legacy of Tendulkar has been woven.But Virat is supremely talented.He has got time on his side to refine his skills for difficult and testing situations.Some 15 years from now onwards we would be in a position to evaluate whether the saga of Sachin had an integral part in the form of Virat Kohli or not.Not now great Ian.Post Benaud i have admired you the most as an impartial and articulate cricket thinker.But no comparisions at this juncture please.

Posted by screamingeagle on (November 3, 2013, 10:13 GMT)

Sachin was consistent in tests and odi's. Virat more in ODI not tests. Long way to go there. Sachin had excellent temperament, virat, not really.

Posted by Pak_suleman on (November 3, 2013, 10:09 GMT)

where was virat kohli when pakistan toured india???..he faced 21 balls from junaid khan in the series..he scored 1 run and got dismissed thrice..junaid was unplayable for him for all 21 balls..these indians are run machines on thier home in flat wckets and short boundaries..in future we will see kohli,dhawan,dhoni and yuvraj also in the list of ODI double centuries as they play most matches on their home ground on flat wickets with short boundaries against poor bowling attacks

Posted by CricketFever11 on (November 3, 2013, 9:08 GMT)

ICC should introduce another ranking system to Indians who play road side tennis ball cricket. 100 in India equal to 30 runs outside India.

Posted by SamRoy on (November 3, 2013, 8:38 GMT)

Someday I would like Mr. Ian Chapell to write about the batsman he enjoyed watching most. The players I enjoyed watching most are Lara, Azharuddin, Mark Waugh, Sehwag, Gilchrist and VVS Laxman (and in that order) in my 20+ years of watching cricket.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 8:34 GMT)

First of all lets stop comparing Great Sachin with Virat. Both are polls apart. I am surprised at Ian's comments. Yes both are aggressive and combative. But as always we tend to go overboard, Virat has yet to prove his test class which is ultimate cricket. Nothing to take away from his match winning knocks - they are and will always be Fabulous. But lets wait and watch before making him another Sachin - with heavy expectations all around his shoulders!!! There is no doubt that he will lead India after 2015 to even greater heights!!!

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 8:26 GMT)

To me the defining moments of Kohli's ability were much before his knocks in the huge chases, that are much talked about. When the other young guns seemed to struggle on bouncy pitches against the pace pack of SA, during the ODI series following the test series in 2010, Kohli seemed so much comfortable handling the consistent chest high balls pitched just back of length.

That ODI series told me Kohli is here to stay as his ability to play spin (against Murali and Mendis during the trip to SL in 2008) and in subcontinental conditions were evident already. After that series in SA, he kept on piling hundred after hundred in ODIs. I think the stiffest test for him would be playing in the swinging conditions of England and NZ.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 8:15 GMT)

It is obviouse that people will now looking for whoes next after Tendulkar as he is on his way for last test match. Comparing Kohli or anyone here is irrelevant. Sachin barred alone the pressure and performed where others flopped. Here even if openers like Dhavan fails you got Sharma next. Even he got out cheeply Kohli bats next. Again middle order can take on with Dhoni Jadeja Raina. Here pressure is soaked by 4-5 batsman hence no way you can compare todays chicks with Sachin. Again this people are scoring heavilly in sub continent, and who know how things will be outside the house. One thing is sure, they are on good start and its a long way to go.

Posted by Little_Aussie_Battler on (November 3, 2013, 7:50 GMT)

Was hoping this article would be on Ian Chappell's criticism of the Argus Review. The review to tell the management of Cricket Australia what they are doing wrong at the same time allow them to keep on doing what they were doing and adding more managers.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 7:41 GMT)

@rakon_me can u please define what u call a high pressure match, or a pressure situation. Playing against Australia with warne,lee and mcgrath - isn't that what u call ha high pressure match. And can u please explain games which u call meaningless. U are judging 2 players based on a very vague and subjective concept.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 7:37 GMT)

@Mr. Aditya Singh... Virat may be a better fielder but we can not ignore Sachin's bowling ability either... he has won us a handful of matches with his bowling also :-) ... guess it evens out here then.

Posted by Kashi0127 on (November 3, 2013, 7:31 GMT)

I dont think Kohli should be compared to Tendulkar. Tendulkar only played for records and statistics and not when situation demanded. Kohli is too involved and passionate about team performance

Posted by Kashi0127 on (November 3, 2013, 7:28 GMT)

@Mayank Pahuja Kohli had better batsman at the other end than Tendular? Thats a joke. Tendulkar had some of the best batsman India produced some even better than Tendulkar himself in class and quality. I think you have forgotten Dravid, Ganguly, VVS. Compare that with what Kohli has - A Raina still struggling for a place, a Pujara who is too raw , a Yuvraj struggling with various things apart from Cricket and Sehwag and Gambhir not entirely reliable in all situations.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 7:08 GMT)

Virat is an exceptional talent no doubt about that. But comparing him with the master now is a bit pre mature. Sachin carried the weight of a bilion people every time he walked out to bat. Every opposition bowler specifically targeted the master because they knew if they can get the master early they can get the match. So, there was always pressure on sachin to perform and carry the whole team along, unlike kohli who plays alongside other match winners in dhoni, yuvi, dhawan,rohit. there will always b someone to take up the mantle if kohli doesnt perform. Moreover, in the era sachin played, the quality of bowlers were far superior to the one available now. sachin played against Mcgrath,warne,waqar,akram,vaas, saqlain,murali,donald,pollock,walsh, Ambrose; I could only single out steyn, swann ,anderson & broad( esp. in English conditions) are challenging in an otherwise mediocre group of bowlers present rite nw.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 7:05 GMT)

"Not satisfied with just guiding his side into the final, Tendulkar's competitive instincts had been aroused and he was in hot pursuit of victory when he was dismissed. That's where Kohli went one better than Tendulkar. Both his imperious centuries ended in unlikely Indian victories."-----I disagree here. Kohli has had better batsmen at other end than what Tendulkar had. A team that supported Sachins hundreds wasnt just there most of the time. Sachinhad to do it all alone! But having said that, I love wacthing Kholi bat. And he arouses the same sentiment as Sachin. Now I switch off my TV after Kohli gets out! SUch a spectacular player to watch!

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 6:46 GMT)

INSPITE of being a huge sachin fan i would prefer virat being the next ponting and getting india 3 worldcup trophys...and the attitude that he has is because he wants to win at all costs just like ponting..and at the same time virat is an excellent fielder which sachin clearly never was..!!

Posted by jimbond on (November 3, 2013, 6:43 GMT)

The first time I saw him was in a telecast of some Ranji/Irani Trophy match (that was before his junior world cup performance) and what impressed me was his confidence in defence, was reminded of a Rahul Dravid. In those days he did demonstrate an ability to score big hundreds. Now I guess he has translated that ability at first class, into the ODI level. One can also glimpse a bit of the mechanical efficiency of Ponting in his batting. But still, he is not the sort of batsman I would travel far to watch. By beauty in batting I mean guys like Azharuddin, Tendulkar, Inzamam, Crowe, Lara, Mark Waugh, Laxman etc, or even a Sehwag or Ganguly. But utility-wise, he may be as important for India in the next decade, as Tendulkar was for the past two decades.

Posted by blthndr on (November 3, 2013, 6:37 GMT)

@rakon_me.....i dont think its temparament...."Tendulkar, calm and calculating, is reserved more by circumstance than nature"....It tells the whole story.....how u react to the situation when u know u r the only one who is in between win and lose.......and when u hav backups like Dhoni,dhawan rohit raina and yuvi ,even if u get out u know there are others who can take care of the team....whats amaze me more about sachin even in that kind of pressure he always scored at a good strike rate throught out his career...

Posted by ProdigyA on (November 3, 2013, 6:21 GMT)

Great article IC. Virat does have tremendous potential.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 6:02 GMT)

The comparisons are bound to happen, but Sachin played in an era where the team is ENTIRELY dependent on him to score runs.Kohli has the luxury of playing with greats and still had other players like Dhoni, and Yuvi mentoring him in ODIs. Sachin's ODI records will be in a danger, but for tests, Kohli still need to prove a little more. The SA tour will be a good test and I'm really hoping that he proves his critics wrong.

Posted by rakon_me on (November 3, 2013, 5:57 GMT)

Ian is spot on when he says Virat is the heir to the King...i would dare say that Virat is a better batsman than sachin when it comes to temparament....Having seen Sachin bat for most of his career and being an ardent fan of the great man himself, I will happily admit that Virat is better than sachin when it comes to temparament while batting..Like sachin, Virat can play every shot in the book..Where he is better is he does not let the match situation or pressure get to him. In fact he thrives in pressure situations as evidenced by his sterling performances while chasing in high pressure matches..he seems mentally very tough and determined...and he is excellent in constructing ODI innings..All Indian fans can be thankful that the heir is ready to become a better King..

Posted by jimbond on (November 3, 2013, 5:44 GMT)

I disagree with one aspect. I don't agree that Kohli needs to become captain anytime soon. Kohli is the best ODI batsman around for India, but my guess is Rohit Sharma could be a better captain. This arrangement could also ensure that Kohli's batting is not affected. A parallel arrangement could also be to introduce Pujara at No. 4 in ODIs (Raina seems to have lost his confidence against pace bowlers- and this could be dangerous for the world cup in Australia). In the Indian batting order a few batsman should be a sure pick for both tests and ODIs. For tests, Dhawan at 1, Pujara at 3, Sharma at 4 and Kohli at 5 are certain, and so is Dhoni at 7. That leaves one opening slot and the number 6 slot. For the opening slot, its worth taking the risk with a youngster- anyone who performs in this year's Ranji- be it Chand or Jiwanjot. For no. 6, they could try a pure batsman in Zol, or else Nayar or Rishi Dhawan.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 5:34 GMT)

ooooops...wheneevr IC prasies someone, he jinxes them Duminy, sehwag, IShant come to mind...watch out viraaaaaat...

Posted by McGorium on (November 3, 2013, 5:05 GMT)

@ PratUSA: I know what you mean re. Kohli. I always thought, way back (the 09 aussie series) that Rohit Sharma was the better batsman as compared to Kohli. I also thought that Sharma should have been picked in favour of Kohli during that series, and a few subsequent series. Kohli had trouble with short stuff, a problem Sharma never had. Additionally, he seemed to be an LBW candidate earlier in his career. It's credit to Kohli (and perhaps the opposite to Sharma) that Kohli has by and large fixed his short-pitched problems, and has ended up being a fine ODI batsman. He has a long way to go in tests, and perhaps this SAF series will show us if he's really in the league of Dravid, VVS, or SRT when it comes to tests.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 5:03 GMT)

everywhere , everybody start comparing.. with respect to kohil innings, there is no way to match with sachin's. indian pitch are no more international pitch, just see in last 2-3 years, 3 double hundred and all are in india.. after IPL, people are interested in 4 & 6 , bcci knows this very well so they just started making pitches for 4&6 only. even india won this series, I would say Aus was better than Ind. why ? rohit & dhavan scored after getting life in each of their innings, from india only kohil and dhoni were too good. but yuvi/raina totaly flopped even on batting surface, on other hand their bowling almost better and they are able to bat up to 8th.. now indian team and people will stay on air.. they wont realized weak link - yuvi, raina, ishant, aswhin. if india want to progress, these 4 should be dropped for next odi and give chance to others.

Posted by xtrafalgarx on (November 3, 2013, 4:56 GMT)

@Lakshmanan Ramanathan: Chappelli loves good young batsmen, he would love it if Kohli played for Aussie.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 4:48 GMT)

Centuries alone don't make a Sachin Tendulkar! If Virat Kohli has to truly become one such - and that as of now, he has pretended to convince us that he could - then, he should control his aggression, bowl his part time spells well!. Sachin Tendulkar always made some contribution to India's win - if it was not his batting, he would bowl and take 1 or 2 crucial wickets. If nothing was going Sachin's way , he would at least show the intention and earnestness towards playing strong cricket. To me, Kohli has shown the temperament of Ponting - like him - a No 3 batsman, brash, aggressive, intelligent! Perhaps, only time, challenges, circumstances and experiences can truly test whether Virat Kohli can really be called a heir to Sachin's throne! For now, he has, in his batting, at least shown his wonderful skills - but to become another Sachin Tendulkar - he truly has to imbibe his virtues as well! Let me wait and see :)

Posted by sjohn on (November 3, 2013, 4:45 GMT)

Ian Chapel said something similar about JP Duminy four years back and where is Duminy now? See http://www.espncricinfo.com/magazine/content/story/429139.html

Posted by Rajan_Sandilya on (November 3, 2013, 4:35 GMT)

@Ian Chappell: As per you "That's where Kohli went one better than Tendulkar.Both his imperious centuries ended in unlikely Indian victories." Allow me to remind you that Sachin has always been lone saviour of team India for a period of 1989 to 2001 in ODIs. He never had back up of the likes of Dhawan ,Rohit who will also perform brilliantly alongside him in the same match. This is the reason Sachin's century in Sharjah league match ended in loss!

Posted by garunachalam on (November 3, 2013, 4:30 GMT)

i dont think virat kohli is the prince mr. ian chappel since he loses his head when sledged and rohit sharma will be the new tormentor for ausralia as he has scored 2 centuries in one innings

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 4:24 GMT)

The article seems so un-Chappelli.

Posted by Emancipator007 on (November 3, 2013, 4:17 GMT)

@PrattUSA:Yes, Tendulkar has been the most heralded teen to make his debut in cricket history & UNSURPRISINSGLY ended up being the greatest all-round batsman (Gavaskar still the best Test batsman). Even I had noticed that Kohli was the most driven & ambitious young bat determined to be an all-time great. Another factor about Kohli's 100 scoring spree is that T20I 100s will also be considered international 100s, so 5-8 T20 career 100s coupled with his ODI and Test 100s (toughest to get Test 100s)should make him front-runner to overhaul SRT's 100 100s.Pity is that India's most accomplished Test bat Pujara is not being allowed to play ODIs (unlike pretenders at no. 4); otherwise we would have been talking about the ensuing Kohli-Pujara era.To think that with batsmen like Rohit,Dhawan,Rahane,Chand (India's next-best hard-wicket player in making) being around, India's batting riches (especially in ODIs) are scary.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 4:15 GMT)

The king and his heir..!!!

Such a wonderful article on Sachin and his heir....

Posted by mjcoxx on (November 3, 2013, 3:52 GMT)

Kohli has been that guy for the last 18 months.

Posted by PratUSA on (November 3, 2013, 3:10 GMT)

One interesting difference between Tendulkar and Kohli is that while Tendulkar was earmarked for greatness, it can't be said for Kohli. I first saw a bit of him in 2008 U-19 world cup final. Suddenly IPL was launched he was in it and in few months' time he made his India debut. Yet he wasn't thought very highly off. I clearly remember sometime in 2009 I was talking to a friend of mine and I said that Kohli appears to be most focused and devoted of young crop and I can see his dedication paying off well. My friend dismissed him completely and I knew it had a lot to do with the perception that Kohli helped build with his foul-mouthed aggression. And look what he has done already, more than what I had imagined back then. I am sure his aggression will change with age, and he is entering an era where he'll feel huge weight of expectations on his shoulder and if he bears it well, like Sachin did, we may already be in The Kohli era.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 3:02 GMT)

the title is very catchy! Since it is now well known about the affiliation of kohli with chases, I would assume we are in for some scintillating fourth inning blinders from kohli in the future.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2013, 2:59 GMT)

superb article by IAN.If kohli has o break sachins one day records he has to change his on field attitude, which is most important for a sportsman.

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Ian ChappellClose
Ian Chappell Widely regarded as the best Australian captain of the last 50 years, Ian Chappell moulded a team in his image: tough, positive, and fearless. Even though Chappell sometimes risked defeat playing for a win, Australia did not lose a Test series under him between 1971 and 1975. He was an aggressive batsman himself, always ready to hook a bouncer and unafraid to use his feet against the spinners. In 1977 he played a lead role in the defection of a number of Australian players to Kerry Packer's World Series Cricket, which did not endear him to the administrators, who he regarded with contempt in any case. After retirement, he made an easy switch to television, where he has come to be known as a trenchant and fiercely independent voice.

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