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Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Explained: Can Kane Williamson catch Virat Kohli in hundred count?

Over the past three years from January 1, 2018, Williamson has scored seven centuries in 20 Tests and his average during this period is 67.89. During the same period, Kohli has scored seven hundreds in 24 Tests and his average is 52.56.

Written by Shamik Chakrabarty , Edited by Explained Desk | Kolkata | Updated: January 7, 2021 7:00:48 am
Kane Williamson, Kane Williamson hundereds, new zealand vs pakistanNew Zealand cricket captain Kane Williamson celebrates on reaching his century during play on day two of the first cricket test between Pakistan and New Zealand at Bay Oval, Mount Maunganui, New Zealand, Dec. 27, 2020. (Andrew Cornaga/Photosport via AP)

New Zealand captain Kane Williamson scored his 24th Test century – fourth double ton – during the second Test against Pakistan in Christchurch. Williamson is seriously chasing India captain Virat Kohli, who has 27 Test hundreds. The leading pack also includes Australia’s Steve Smith and David Warner.

Where does Williamson stand in comparison to Kohli?

The New Zealand skipper now has 24 Test hundreds in 83 matches. Kohli, on the other hand, has 27 centuries in 87 Tests. Williamson has 32 half-centuries compared to Kohli’s 23. Their Test batting averages are pretty similar – touching 53 for Williamson and 53.41 for the India captain.

Who is ahead in terms of recent form?

Over the past three years from January 1, 2018, Williamson has scored seven centuries in 20 Tests and his average during this period is 67.89. During the same period, Kohli has scored seven hundreds in 24 Tests and his average is 52.56.

Who has a better away record?

In 36 away Tests, Williamson has scored nine centuries and collected 2,680 runs at 42.53. In comparison, in 48 away Tests, Kohli has accounted for 14 hundreds and scored 3,760 runs at 44.23. Williamson has scored two centuries in Australia and one each in India and England. He is yet to reach three figures in South Africa. Kohli has scored six centuries in Australia, two each in England and South Africa and one in New Zealand.

How have Williamson and Kohli fared in India and New Zealand respectively?

In seven Tests in India, Williamson has scored 461 runs at 35.46, including a hundred. In four Tests in New Zealand, Kohli has made 252 runs at 36.00, including a century.

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Can Williamson overtake Kohli?

Williamson is 30 years old, while Kohli is 32. But New Zealand don’t play Test cricket as frequently as India. Over the last six years since January 1, 2015, Williamson has played 45 Tests compared to Kohli’s 55. Unlike India, the Kiwis don’t play four of five-Test series. During the ongoing Test against Pakistan, New Zealand radio commentators were discussing New Zealand Cricket’s apparent reluctance to host many Test matches due to financial reasons. Rugby is the No. 1 sport in New Zealand. Also, their time zone acts as a deterrent.

New Zealand is seven-and-a-half hours ahead of India and 13 hours ahead of GMT. Time difference affects viewership in the subcontinent and England – the two major cricket-viewing hotspots. This adversely affects broadcast right deals, especially for Test cricket.

The ongoing series against Pakistan is New Zealand’s last during the current World Test Championship cycle which ends on March 31. Kohli returned home on paternity leave after playing the first Test in Australia, but he will have four home Tests against England in February-March in the current WTC cycle.

Who else are in the race?

Former Australia captain Steve Smith is snapping at Kohli’s heels with 26 centuries from just 75 Tests. He will play two more Tests against India in the ongoing series followed by three in South Africa in the current WTC cycle. Smith’s teammate David Warner has 24 centuries from 84 Tests.

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