Can anyone equal Sachin Tendulkar’s Test tally?
Many excellent batters have graced the game but none has been able to match Sachin Tendulkar’s longevity.
Miles ahead of the next best
A decade has passed since Sachin Tendulkar hung his boots at his home ground at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai having completed the iconic feat of 200 test matches, but still no one has been able to breach his numerous records which stand in Test cricket.
Tendulkar is the highest run scorer by a fair margin with 15921 runs and an average of 53.78 with 51 centuries and 68 half centuries. The next best is Ricky Ponting who made 13378 runs from 168 test matches at 51.85.
Following Ponting is Jacques Kallis, Rahul Dravid, Kumar Sangakkara, Brian Lara, ShivnarineChandrapaul, MahelaJayawardene, Alan Border and Steve Waugh.
Root the only active player in top 15
All of these players have already retired from test cricket and hence will not be able to break Tendulkar’s record. The closest player to him who is still active is Joe Root who has already crossed the 10000 run milestone and averages close to 50, having struck 27 centuries and 53 half centuries from 119 test matches.
Root made his debut back in 2012 against India at Nagpur and has been going strong since then. Over the last couple of years, he has taken his game to another level and recently became the joint youngest player along with former England captain Alastair Cook to score 10000 runs in test cricket at just 31 years of age.
Root still has a chance of breaking Tendulkar’s record if he can keep himself fit and in form over the next 5 years. However, that will be a much tougher job than it seems as there are several players who have flashes of brilliance, even 2-3 years of consistent run making like ViratKohli, Steve Smith, Kane Williamson and Babar Azam but none has been able to match the longevity of the Little Master.
Cook couldn’t, can Root do it?
Root is in a similar position to Alastair Cook who had also crossed the 10000 mark in Test cricket at 31 years of age but could not sustain his good run and had to retire in 2018 after mental exhaustion.
Cook continues to pile on the runs in County cricket but his tank was empty when it came to International cricket. Root, who has already given up captaincy, has also had a lot of mental battering and it will be worthwhile seeing whether he can sustain the rigours of international cricket for much longer.