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Sachin Tendulkar vs Virat Kohli: Who is the real GOAT for India on the World Cup stage

Sachin Tendulkar vs Virat Kohli: Who is the real GOAT for India on the World Cup stage

Sachin Tendulkar vs Virat Kohli: Who is the real GOAT for India on the World Cup stage
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By Dustin Yarde  Nov 2, 2022 6:07:19 PM IST (Updated)

Virat Kohli recently matched Sachin Tendulkar’s record of 21 fifty-plus scores with his latest half-century at the ICC T20 World Cup in Australia, but how do his overall batting figures match-up against the legend on the biggest stage of all.

The World Cup is the grandest stage of all for any sports person and how a player performs when carrying the hopes of an entire nation separates the good from the truly great. Two players in recent history have made a habit of consistently delivering for India at the World Cup and there are no point for guessing who these two batting maestros are.

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While Sachin Tendulkar has dominated the ODI World Cup, making it his personal playground to torment opponents, Virat Kohli has gone about demolishing teams in the shortest format of the game.
Let's first take a look at King Kohli's dominance on the T20 World Cup batting charts.
Most Runs in Men's T20 World Cups 
Kohli’s latest knock at the ICC T20 World Cup 2022 of 64 not-out against Bangladesh has seen him overtake Mahela Jayawardene at the top of the T20 World Cup batting charts.
Jayawardene has been the T20 World Cup’s leading scorer since 2014 with 1016 runs from 31 innings. However, Kohli has chased him down to take top spot with 1065 runs from just 23 innings.
Here’s a look at the top run scorers in the T20 World Cup.
RunsInningsStrike-RateAverage50s / 100s
Virat Kohli106523132.4688.7513 / 0 
Mahela Jayawardene101631134.7439.076 / 1
Chris Gayle96531142.7534.467 / 2
Rohit Sharma92134129.3535.429 / 0
Tillakaratne Dilshan89734124.0630.936 / 0 
The chart clearly illustrates Kohli’s dominance on the world cup stage in the shortest format. Not only has Kohli reached the top in the fewest innings, but his average of 88.75 shows how dominant he has been, remaining not-out on 11 occasions. His tally of 13 half-centuries is also unmatched, with Rohit Sharma (9) the closest.
Most Runs in Men's ODI World Cups
T20I cricket came a little too late for Sachin Tendulkar, with the master blaster not featuring for India in a single T20 World Cup. However, Tendulkar’s ODI World Cup record is second to none. He comfortably leads the second-highest scorer, Ricky Ponting, while also boasting the most fifty-plus scores (21).
RunsInningsStrike-RateAverage50s / 100s
Sachin Tendulkar22784488.9856.9515 / 6 
Ricky Ponting17434279.9545.866 / 5
Kumara Sangakkara15323586.5556.747 / 5
Brian Lara12253386.2642.247 / 2
AB de Villiers120722117.2963.526 / 4 
Most Runs for India at World Cups (T20I and ODI combined): 
Thus with both Kohli and Tendulkar’s dominance comfortably established at the top of the charts in each format let’s now take a look at how these two legends match-up against each other when comparing numbers for India on the World Stage.
RunsInningsStrike-RateAverage50s / 100s
Sachin Tendulkar22784488.9856.9515 / 6 
Virat Kohli209549105.1761.6119 / 2
Rohit Sharma189951109.7046.3112 / 6
Yuvraj Singh133149104.2234.1211 / 1
MS Dhoni130954101.1539.665 / 0 
Remember, all of the other batters in the top-five have played for India in both the T20I and ODI World Cups while Tendulkar never played in the T20 World Cup. Yet, Tendulkar continues to dominate the charts as he leads the way with his massive tally of 2278 runs.
Kohli has managed to match Tendulkar’s record of 21 fifty-plus scores with his latest half-century while his average of 61.61 is unmatched among players with 100-plus runs at World Cups. It seems inevitable that Kohli will eventually catch up with the Master Blaster with the 2023 ODI World Cup around the corner.
Still, there’s very little to separate the two when it comes to performing for India on the biggest stage. And, for the time being, the stats don’t lie, Tendulkar is and will remain the highest-scorer for India at World Cups, that is unless King Kohli has other plans in the remainder of the ongoing tournament in Australia.
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