Virat Kohli vs. Babar Azam: An in-depth look at the duo’s statistics across formats

Unlike Kohli, who has been playing international cricket since 2008, Babar made his debut in 2015.

Between August 2017 and April 2021, former Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli dominated the One-Day International (ODI) circuit to such an extent that no other player dethroned the batter from his number one ODI status. On April 19, 2021, however, all that changed as Babar Azam ended Kohli’s 1,258-day dominance atop the ODI batter rankings.

In reality, the Babar Azam vs. Virat Kohli debate has been raging since the Pakistan captain made his international debut in 2015. The reason was understandable, as Babar had done a lot of what Kohli had done during his U-19 days. Despite the fact that the Pakistan batter, unlike Kohli, did not win the U-19 global title, Babar appeared to be bound for greatness.

By the time Babar played his first international match for Pakistan, Kohli had already played in more than 150 One-Day Internationals and had hit 20 or more tons. Fast ahead to 2022, and Babar Azam has been the fastest player to achieve 2,000 ODI runs, having done it in only 47 appearances. Kohli, on the other hand, needed 56 games to accomplish the milestone. With that in mind, let’s take a deeper look at how the statistics stack up when two of cricket’s current greats are compared.


Virat Kohli vs. Babar Azam stats

The closest comparable is in T20 internationals, where the Indian batsman has played 115 games and Babar has played 99. As of now, the former has scored 4008 runs in these appearances while batting at a 52.73 average. Babar, on the other hand, has 3,355 runs with a strike rate of 41.41.

Virat Kohli vs. Babar Azam in T20I
Player Matches Runs Average Strike rate 100s 50s
Virat Kohli 115 4,008 52.73 137.96 1 37
Babar Azam 99 3,355 41.41 127.80 2 30


It’s amazing to see that, despite playing 16 more T20Is than the Pakistani hitter, Kohli has managed to maintain an average above 50. While Babar has two hundreds in cricket’s shortest format, Virat has only one hundred in T20Is. In the meantime, Kohli has 37 half-centuries against Babar’s 30.

Since we’re on the subject of numbers, let’s have a look at Babar Azam vs Virat Kohli stats in other formats. Kohli is one of just six players in history to have scored more than 12,000 runs in one-day internationals. He is the fastest player to reach 12,000 runs, having done it in only 251 games.

Virat Kohli vs. Babar Azam in ODI
Player Matches Runs Average Strike rate 100s 50s
Virat Kohli 271 12,809 57.69 93.77 46 64
Babar Azam 95 4,813 59.41 89.03 17 24


In Test cricket, Kohli once again leads the way with 8,195 runs in 106 Tests, compared to Babar’s 3,696 runs in 47 Tests. Kohli is also the fastest player in history to achieve 7,000 runs in the longest format, having done so in just 81 matches.

Kohli is significantly ahead of Babar in terms of hundreds across all formats. The Indian legend’s 74 international centuries outnumber Babar’s 28 tons across all formats.

Virat Kohli vs. Babar Azam in Test
Player Matches Runs Average Strike rate 100s 50s
Virat Kohli 108 8,416 48.93 55.33 28 28
Babar Azam 47 3,696 48.63 55.02 9 26


Virat Kohli vs. Babar Azam captaincy record

This is when things start to get interesting. Babar has scored 2,065 runs in 66 appearances after being selected Pakistan’s T20I captain in 2019. Pakistan’s hitter has hit two tons and 20 half-centuries throughout this time.

Babar Azam vs Virat Kohli T20I captaincy record
Virat Kohli Metrics Babar Azam
50 Matches 66
30 Won 40
16 Lost 21
1,570 Runs 2,065


Kohli’s maiden assignment as T20I captain came in 2017, and his stint as captain ended in 2021. During this span, Kohli scored 1,570 runs as T20I captain in 50 matches, batting at a 47.57 average and a strike rate of 140.55.

In terms of win/loss statistics in Twenty20 Internationals, Babar Azam has won 40 and lost 21 of his 66 matches as captain. Kohli, on the other side, won 30 of his 50 T20Is as captain while losing 16.

Babar Azam vs Virat Kohli Test captaincy record
Virat Kohli Metrics Babar Azam
68 Matches 18
40 Won 8
17 Lost 6
5,608 Runs 1,651


In terms of Test cricket, Kohli has captained India in 68 Tests, winning 40 of them, losing 17 and drawing 11. Meanwhile, Babar took over as captain of the Test squad in 2020 and has only played 18 Tests as captain, winning eight and losing six.

Babar Azam vs Virat Kohli ODI captaincy record
Virat Kohli Metrics Babar Azam
95 Matches 21
65 Won 13
27 Lost 7
5,449 Runs 1,454


When it comes to ODI captaincy, Babar has only 21 matches as Pakistan’s 50-overs captain, during which time he has won 13 and lost seven matches. Kohli, on the other hand, has captained India in 95 One-Day Internationals, winning 65 and losing 27.


When compared, Virat appears to be well ahead, but keep in mind that Virat has far more experience than Babar and has been playing for much longer. Only in the last few years has Babar emerged as a rival. Virat is now 33 years old, whereas Babar is only 27 years old. Babar has many years of cricketing ahead of him, and he has every chance of surpassing Virat in terms of statistics. Experts regard them as cricketing diamonds, and the cricketing community should rejoice as these two champions continue to flourish.

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