Statistical comparison on who is better T20I batsman between Virat Kohli and Babar Azam
Who do you think is a better T20I batsman?
Updated - May 26, 2021 11:57 am
T20 cricket has grown manifolds since its beginning, and we have seen new heroes emerge in this format. With the introduction of different T20 leagues across the globe, the batsmen too are now equipped with multiple talents when it comes to scoring runs. At the international level, there have been some batsmen who are regarded among the best in the business in the shortest format. This includes the likes of Virat Kohli, Babar Azam, Martin Guptill, and Rohit Sharma.
In this particular article, we will be comparing the numbers of Virat Kohli and Babar Azam in the T20I format. Both the captains have had a huge impact on their team in T20Is. We will be comparing them on various criteria to get a broad understanding.
Overall record in T20Is
In his T20I career so far, Virat Kohli has aggregated 3159 runs at an excellent average of 52.65 and a strike rate of 139.04. This includes a total of 28 fifties coming from his bat. On the other hand, Pakistan captain Babar Azam has scored 2035 runs at an average of 47.32 and a strike rate of 129.7. Babar has hit 18 half-centuries till now, and also registered his first T20I hundred this year. The overall record puts the Indian captain ahead of his Pakistan counterpart.
Record while chasing
As far as the record while chasing is concerned, Virat Kohli is in a different league. He has an incredible average of 83.76 runs in T20I chases with 1759 runs at a strike rate of 137.2. For Pakistan, their captain has 872 runs to his name at an average of 45.89 and a strike rate of 130.93. Clearly, Virat has mastered the art of chasing in the shortest format.
Record while batting first
Though Virat Kohli has an exceptional record in chases, his numbers while batting first are not that good. His average in the first innings is 35.89, where he has scored 1400 runs at a strike rate of 141.41. In comparison, Babar Azam has quite a good average of 48.45, and he has scored 1163 runs with the help of 12 fifties. In the current time in T20Is, the challenge of setting a total has also become quite difficult. In such scenarios, you need those batsmen who can execute their innings well while batting first.
Batting stats in death overs
Despite being a top-order batsman, Virat has scored a lot of runs in death overs too. He has an impressive strike rate of 191.58 in this phase, and also maintains a healthy average of 52. However, Babar Azam has a dismal record at the death with an average of 13.62 in 21 innings.
Milestones of 1000 and 2000 runs
Virat Kohli was the fastest player to complete 1000 T20I runs back in 2015 when he reached the landmark in 27 innings. Later, in 2018, Babar toppled Virat from the top spot by completing 1000 runs in 26 innings. Currently, this record is held by England’s Dawid Malan who achieved the milestone in his 24th innings.
Similar is the case of 2000 T20I runs, which was achieved by Virat Kohli in 56 innings in 2018, the then fastest record. This year against Zimbabwe, Babar Azam reached the 2000-run mark in 52 innings and claimed the top spot. Virat Kohli became the first player to complete 3000 T20I runs while playing against England in 2021.
Contribution in team runs
|Player||Match||Runs||Team Runs||Avg||% of Team Runs|
Among the players who have been part of at least 20 matches, Babar Azam has the highest percentage of team runs. This tells how much is Pakistan team has been dependent on their captain for batting duties. Virat is at the fourth spot on this list, and he also gets good support from his fellow teammates in the batting line-up.
Though Virat Kohli is lagging a bit while batting first, he is way ahead of Babar Azam in other aspects of the game in T20I cricket. Statistically, Virat Kohli ends this debate as a better T20I batsman when compared to his Pakistan counterpart.