SA v India, 1st Test, Johannesburg, 1st day December 18, 2013

Kohli's best and a rare first-innings ton

Stats highlights of the first day's play between South Africa and India at the Wanderers

  • Virat Kohli's 119 is his fifth hundred in Tests and his highest score. Two of these tons have come in away matches. He hit a hundred in his last away Test too - against Australia at the Adelaide Oval in 2012. Kohli has hit six centuries in international cricket this year, equalling AB de Villiers and Shikhar Dhawan for the most by any batsman in 2013.

  • Indian batsmen don't often score centuries in the first innings of a tough tour outside the subcontinent. Kohli is the first batsman since Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag - both hit centuries in Bloemfontein in 2001- to make a hundred in the first game of a tour outside the subcontinent excluding Zimbabwe, when India have batted first. There have been only three such hundreds - Dilip Sardesai's 212 against West Indies in 1971, Polly Umrigar's 130 against West Indies in 1953, and Vijay Manjrekar's 133 against England at Headingley in 1952. Tendulkar, Sehwag and Sanjay Manjrekar are the other three Indian batsmen - before Kohli - to have made their centuries by the end of the first day's play.

  • Kohli is also the eighth India batsman to hit a Test ton in South Africa. There have been 12 hundreds by Indian batsmen in South Africa, including five from Tendulkar. Kohli is the first player from the subcontinent to hit a hundred at the Wanderers since Azhar Mahmood struck 136 in 1998. In fact, of the 22 overseas batsmen who have scored centuries at this venue, only four are from the subcontinent.

  • Kohli's century was the first by an Indian batting at No.4 in 49 innings since Tendulkar's 146 in Cape Town in 2011. The last batsman other than Tendulkar to score a Test hundred at No. 4 for India was Sourav Ganguly, who hit 239 against Pakistan in Bangalore in 2007.

  • India's opening pair managed to add just 17 runs in the innings, keeping in tune with their ordinary record in recent away matches. In 25 innings away from home since 2011, India's openers have added only 399 runs for the first wicket at an average of 15.96. The only fifty-plus opening partnership for India during this period came at Lord's in July 2011 when Gautam Gambhir and Abhinav Mukund added 63 runs in the first innings. At home, India's openers have done better during this period - adding 1403 at 58.45 from 24 innings, with three century partnerships and eight fifty stands.

  • The 89-run partnership between Cheteshwar Pujara and Kohli is India's second highest for the third wicket in South Africa. Gautam Gambhir and Tendulkar added 176 for the third wicket in Cape Town in 2011.

  • The first Test is MS Dhoni's 50th as captain. He has now captained India in the most Tests, passing Sourav Ganguly's 49. Dhoni is the 14th captain to lead his country in 50 or more Tests, drawing level with Viv Richards, Andrew Strauss and Mark Taylor.

Shiva Jayaraman is a sub-editor (stats) at

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • android_user on December 19, 2013, 14:40 GMT

    LooksKohli is stepping into Sachins shoes.

  • android_user on December 19, 2013, 7:59 GMT

    vijay was important please do not discount that.

  • dummy4fb on December 19, 2013, 7:29 GMT

    Jayaram's stats are correct. Both ganguly's innings, at lords and at brisbane came in india's 1st innings but india batted 2nd in those tests. lords was the 2nd test of that 1996 tour but brisbane was the 1st of that 2003 tour. I personally feel the gabba knock was really special because it set the tone for india on that tough tour which india eventually managed to draw.

  • android_user on December 19, 2013, 7:28 GMT

    my only failed prediction was ajinkya...he has shown me differently...hang on are in for a fight here.

  • HiyerNHiyer on December 19, 2013, 6:27 GMT

    I still feel that India should look to grind the Saffers down.. look to play 150 in every innings and make them toil. even if you score at 2.5 will score 375.. This team has the talent and potential. I would suggest drop Vijay and let Rohit Open and make way for one more bowler and Dhawan is better advised to see through the first 15 overs. Ashwin can be developed into a Bowling All rounder and Bhuvi can bat a bit. I would go like this Dhawan, Rohit, Pujara, Kohli, Ajinkya, Dhoni, Ashwin, Bhuvi, Ishaant, Zaheer, Umesh/Shami,

  • Avin1999 on December 19, 2013, 6:27 GMT

    You have forgotten even Saurav Ganguly scored 144 in the first test in the first inning hundred against Australia in Brisbane..

  • dummy4fb on December 19, 2013, 5:55 GMT

    Where are SA Fans Now..Lolzzz

  • cricfan66956045 on December 19, 2013, 5:38 GMT

    For Pete's sake...Tendulkar is retired. Why do you keep bringing him up in records? Oh wait...maybe because all the naysayers forgot how big his contribution to an Indian innings was? hmm...

  • humdrum on December 19, 2013, 5:34 GMT

    I would like confirmation on an interesting statistic: Sachin Tendulkar has scored 5 test hundreds in SA. The last batsman before him was Wally Hammond in the late forties. Can someone please confirm this,as it would open up a very interesting debate on'flat track bullies'via-a-vis batsmen from Australia( brought up on bouncy wickets) and England(seaming,but 'true' wickets). The no of tests played in SA would also be a factor,as against the class of the SA bowlers, who,as is well known,have pedigree of the highest order.

  • Volatility on December 19, 2013, 5:20 GMT

    informative article, thx.

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