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 ESPNcricinfo.com

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