Has modern cricket’s greatest run-machine Virat Kohli passed his peak?

Written by Abhishek Patil

It has been a while since India captain Virat Kohli scored a century across any format of the game. With his second duck of the 4-match Test series against England, Kohli went on to register a few unwanted records to his name. But does that mean that he has passed his peak?

There’s no denying that Kohli is traditionally known to lead the Indian team to new heights with his bat but despite getting starts, the 32-year-old hasn’t quite been able to put big scores on the board, something that his fans aren’t quite used to.

A look at Kohli’s career in the longest format of the game does put light on the subject. Kohli has played a total of 90 Tests for India, with the 4th match against England in the ongoing series being his 91st. If the veteran batsman’s career is divided into three phases of 30 games each, the story that gets painted is quite an interesting one.

Many people would argue that Kohli isn’t in his best form at present but statistics suggest that the last set of 30 matches is, in fact, that the best that Kohli has been in. In comparison to the Tests from 1 to 30 and 31 to 60, Kohli has added more runs to his kitty in the 61 to 90 phase.

  • Test 1 to 30: 8 centuries and 9 fifties
  • Test 31 to 60: 9 centuries and 5 fifties (including 4 double tons)
  • Test 61 to 90: 10 centuries and 11 fifties (including 3 double tons)

Kohli’s numbers from the start of 2020 haven’t been as impressive as his overall report card. The Indian skipper only scored 2, 19, 3 and 14 in the 2-match Test series against New Zealand. He then arrived in Australia and produced a battling 74 before being run-out in the first innings. The second innings saw the entire Indian team bundle up for just 36, with Virat scoring just 4.

Though India made a triumphant return in the Test series post the Adelaide humiliation, Kohli had returned home having taken paternity leave. He marked his return to the team with the Test series against England, where his scores read: 11, 72, 0, 62, 27, DNB and 0.

In two of the six innings that Kohli has participated in as a batsman in the series against England, he had gotten the starts, putting up scores like 72 and 62, but didn’t quite go on to convert them into triple-digit scores.

If Kohli’s numbers in the last 10 innings are to be considered, he has only aggregated 267 runs, a number that doesn’t quite reflect the career he has had so far.

While there’s no denying that Kohli seems a little out of form as far as his own standards are concerned, but is it only a matter of one big score that would awaken the Indian run-machine?


About the author

Abhishek Patil