How many World Cup hundreds has Virat Kohli scored?

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We suppose we really should at least acknowledge that the biggest cricket match of recent years took place. You know the one – Virat Kohli scored a hundred (as usual) and Misbah-ul-Haq made a futile 50 (as usual).

It was Kohli’s 22nd one-day international hundred, a number that is both strikingly impressive and slightly meaningless at the same time. Kohli and AB de Villiers are the preeminent one-day batsmen of their time, but they play so many crappy nothing games that one-day international statistics don’t really have the power to impress.

The World Cup matters, of course – that is an official editorial stance round these parts – so maybe we should focus on players’ World Cup records specifically, in which case the knock against Pakistan was Kohli’s second World Cup hundred.

That sounds like nothing and some India fans will grumble and say we’re deliberately trying to diminish their man’s achievements, but it’s quite the opposite.

Two is a lot

If you can get your head around that, you will start to understand where we’re coming from. The two hundreds in games that matter outweigh the 20 in games that don’t. Virender Sehwag only made two World Cup hundreds in his entire career. Brian Lara made two. Even the mighty Nathan Astle only made two.

Only 11 players in history have made more than two World Cup hundreds. We’re saying that two is a lot, but looked upon like that, even one is a lot.

And one IS a lot. That’s what cricket should be like. Hundreds should be A BIG DEAL.

And they are

For now at least, World Cup hundreds remain a big deal. Even Sachin Tendulkar, whose statistical jetsam is too sprawling to comprehend, notched a manageable number. He made six. That is few enough that a human being could conceivably remember them all.

When (yes ‘when’) Virat Kohli makes his third World Cup hundred, he will leap into equal fifth place behind Sourav Ganguly and Mark Waugh on four, Ricky Ponting on five and Sachin Tendulkar on six. He will be level with the likes of Viv Richards, Saeed Anwar, Sanath Jayasuriya, Mahela Jayawardene and AB de Villiers.

Strikes us that you don’t actually need to play huge numbers of matches to identify the best players. Just play a handful that actually matter and you’ll get decent, meaningful results.


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  1. This brings to my mind that wonderful Harry Nilsson song (made famous by three Dog Night): One. In particular the line “two can be as bad as one, it’s the loneliest number since the number one”…which really isn’t a rhyme. I’ll get my uke into it.

    Meanwhile, top hover captioning, KC. Well done. And during the World Cup too, when it really matters.

  2. I am torn. On the one hand, I agree with the sentiment whole-heartedly. But on the other, I’d have to acknowledge a list that has Rameez Raja, Scott Styris, and Matty Hayden above Aravinda de Silva. This is not easy, not at all.

  3. Lou Vincent scored a hundred in a World Cup match. He was probably trying to get out but accidentally hit the ball to the boundary again and again.

  4. “The biggest cricket match in years”?

    I feel I have to comment on that, yer Maj. By what metric? The number of people giving a damn? Yes, okay, agreed. But the import, the format, the standard of cricket played? I didn’t watch it, granted, but I’ve seen the scorecard (as well as the fact that it’s an ODI World Cup group match), and I can’t, don’t, believe it.

    One day, I hope there will be a Test World Cup. I hope that an Indian team that has remembered how to bowl will meet a Pakistani team that has remembered how to bat in the final, and it will fill all four of those metrics.

    Blinder of a hover-caption, mind.

    1. What big cricket match?

      Can’t be anything from the WC, because that’s as important as the 7s World Series is in rugby.

      Who’s playing Tests right now? Am I missing something?

      When do England get to lose to Scotland?

  5. Only having to listen to radio replays of that South African Charles Fortune commentating on cricket is worse than 50 and 20 over cricket. I refuse to attend.
    The inaugural Titantic cruise would have been a better experience.

  6. Could we have a new category to judge bowlers? It is called “The best first spell from an unknown bowler from an Associate Nation”. It doesn’t have a catchy title, but that is the point. It shouldn’t. Nothing about these guys is remotely flattering, and yet Mirwais Ashraf of Afghanistan, close on the heels of McBrine, now has the figures 5-2-8-2.

    I don’t know about you folks, but I am excited.

  7. Here is the latest KC Fanzone Poll:

    Does Matty Hayden have the dullest commentary voice on the planet?

    Yes 26%
    No 0%
    Zzzzzz 74%

    1. Is Hayden on that shortlist of 100 people to be sent on a one-way trip to Mars?

      And if not, why not?

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