Virat Kohli vs MS Dhoni: Achievements as captains (Test cricket)
India are set to tour the UK for playing the ICC World Test Championship final and England Test series. In the championship finale, skipper Virat Kohli will break MS Dhoni's record of leading India in the most number of Test matches. At the moment, Kohli is tied with Dhoni in terms of Tests played as captain (60). We present their achievements in Test cricket.
Anil Kumble passed on the baton to Dhoni in 2008
Dhoni arrived in an era where India had several legends. Considering his successful captaincy stint at the 2007 World T20, the management termed Dhoni as the successor of Kumble, who was leading the Test side back then. Dhoni first took over the reins from Kumble midway through the 2008 South Africa series, while the latter announced retirement from international cricket during the Australia series.
In 2014, Kohli took over in a similar manner
Just like his predecessor, Dhoni silently bid adieu to Test cricket on India's 2014/15 tour Down Under. Yet again, the latter baffled everyone with a poker face, announcing a sudden retirement, with one Test to go. A nonchalant Dhoni handed the captaincy to Kohli, whose aggressive demeanor took India to new heights later on. Kohli is now India's most successful captain in Test cricket.
Dhoni and Kohli won their first series as full-time captains
Dhoni helped India defeat England 1-0 in his first full-time Test series at home. India had earlier won three Tests, with Dhoni as a stand-in captain. Kohli followed Dhoni's footsteps by winning his first series as captain in 2015 (considering series with two or more Tests). India managed to defeat Sri Lanka 2-1 in their own backyard even though they lost the series opener.
Both Dhoni and Kohli made a perfect start
As a full-time captain, Dhoni remained unbeaten in his first 10 Test series. India won seven and drew three series during this period. On the other hand, Kohli was unbeaten in his first 10 series after being appointed the full-time captain (Won: 9, Drew: 1).
The only Indian captains to win ICC Test mace
Dhoni made India the number one Test side in December 2009 after the side defeated Sri Lanka 2-0. This was Dhoni's third consecutive Test series win as captain. India stayed at the top till they started losing away from home. Team India achieved a similar feat under Kohli in 2016 after beating WI 2-0. Notably, India continue to lead the ICC Test Team Rankings.
Memorable wins of India under Dhoni and Kohli
India have registered several momentous victories in Test cricket. Their win at Lord's on the 2014 England tour is surely among them. The bouncer barrage of Ishant Sharma, actuated by Dhoni, resulted in India's historic win. Nearly four years later, the bravado of Kohli helped India stage a rather underrated win in Johannesburg. Notably, the wicket there was termed "dangerous" by the experts.
A look at their special feats as captains
Dhoni is one of the two Indian captains (Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi being the other) to win a Test series in New Zealand. Kohli remains the only Indian captain to win a Test series Down Under. Meanwhile, both of them have at least one double-century while leading in Test cricket. The duo registered a win each in South Africa during the respective tenures.
Dominance at home!
In Dhoni's leadership, India won 27 out of 60 Tests (lost 18, drew 15). Meanwhile, Kohli have now led India to 36 wins in as many Tests (lost 14, drew 10). Kohli recently broke Dhoni's record of most Test wins as captain at home (21). The former now has 23 wins in 30 home Tests, and is yet to lose a series at home.
An opportunity to own an ICC trophy
Over the years, Dhoni and Kohli have been the recipients of many firsts in Indian cricket. The former made India world champions in both T20I and ODI cricket, besides winning the Test mace and Champions Trophy title. His successor, Kohli, now has an opportunity to go past Dhoni (in terms of matches played as captain), and lay hands on a coveted ICC trophy.