Comparing Virat Kohli’s batting numbers in international cricket as captain and player – High School

Virat Kohli completed 15 years in international cricket today. It was on August 18, 2008 that Kohli received his maiden Indian cap. He got a place in the Indian playing XI for the first ODI of the series between India and Sri Lanka in Dambulla.

It was a forgettable game for the Indian team as they suffered an eight-wicket defeat at the hands of the home side. After electing to bat first, India got bowled out for 146 runs. Sri Lanka chased down the 147-run target in 34.5 overs.

Debutant Virat Kohli opened the batting with Gautam Gambhir. Kohli scored 12 runs off 22 balls before Nuwan Kulasekara trapped him LBW. While Kohli’s first game was not so memorable, he ensured that the Indian cricket have a lot of unforgettable experiences in the next 15 years.

Kohli first proved himself as a match-winner with the bat by performing well in Tests, ODIs and T20Is. His top performances helped him become the Indian captain. Kohli’s leadership skills took India from the seventh to the first position in the ICC Test Rankings.

The Indian team also finished runners-up in the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 and qualified for the semifinals of the 2019 Cricket World Cup while playing under Virat Kohli’s captaincy. When Kohli was the captain, he believed in leading from the front by scoring big for India.

Kohli stepped down as captain in 2021/22 when he was going through the worst phase of his career. He took a break from the sport in mid-2022 and came back better than ever, scoring heaps of runs in all three formats while playing as a player.

Now that Kohli has completed 15 years in international cricket, in this article, we will compare his numbers as a batter while playing as a captain and a player for India.

Virat Kohli – Captain vs Player in Tests

Comparing his numbers in his favorite format first, Virat Kohli has played 43 Tests as a player and 68 Tests as captain. He had an average of 54.8 as a captain and he recorded 20 centuries and 18 half-centuries.


As a player, Kohli has aggregated 2,812 runs at an average of 40.75. He scored seven double hundreds as Test captain, while his highest score as a player is 186. It is crystal clear that Kohli the captain was more consistent than Kohli the player in Tests.

Virat Kohli – Captain vs Player in ODIs

Comparing his numbers in ODI format now, Kohli scored 5,449 runs in 91 innings as a captain. His average was 72.65, while his strike rate was 98.28. Kohli registered 21 centuries and 27 half-centuries as captain in the 50-over format.

As a player, Kohli has scored 7,449 runs in 174 innings. His average comes down to 49.66, while his strike rate is 90.48. Although Kohli has scored 25 hundreds as a player, his average and strike rate are lower than his record as a captain.

Virat Kohli – Captain vs Player in T20Is

Kohli scored 1,570 runs in 46 innings as India’s T20I captain. His average was 47.57, with his strike rate being 140.55. The star Indian batter recorded 13 half-centuries in those 46 knocks.

As a player in T20Is, Kohli has scored 2,438 runs in 61 innings. His average jumps up to 56.69, while his strike rate has been 136.35. Kohli has scored one century and 24 fifties as a player in this format.


To conclude, one can say that Virat Kohli achieved more success as a batter in Tests and ODIs when he captained India. Meanwhile, in T20Is, his performance has been more or less the same irrespective of whether he is leading or not.

Edited by Sudeshna Banerjee

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