MS Dhoni vs Virat Kohli

MS Dhoni vs Virat Kohli is the biggest debate of Indian cricket fans & fans the world over in recent times. While MS Dhoni has been the most successful captain in Indian cricket with an immense record of wins & trophies, Virat Kohli has been one of the most successful & in-form cricketers in world cricket. While both cricketers have played their respective roles very well, when it comes to the Kohli vs Dhoni debate, their captaincy approach & records are often under scrutiny. Nevertheless, they both are among the favorites of fantasy cricket players around the world due to their skills on the field.

Table of Contents:

Dhoni vs Kohli Stats Comparison

The overall comparison of Kohli and Dhoni in different formats of cricket are:

Dhoni vs Kohli in Test

In the purest form of the game, which is considered the true test of a cricketer’s talent, let’s see how Dhoni & Kohli compare:

Stat

MS Dhoni

Virat Kohli

Match

90

96

Innings

144

162

Runs

4876

7765

Avg

38.09

51.08

Hundred

6

27

Fifty

33

27

Best

224

254*

If we observe closely, the batting statistics are skewed in favour of Virat Kohli. This goes to show that in obvious terms Kohli is the better batsman. But, if we look closely at the catches record which is overlooked here, it will show that Dhoni has 256 catches to his name while Virat only has 96. But that is not a number to show any considerable difference because Dhoni is a wicket-keeper & Kohli is an outfielder.

Dhoni vs Kohli in ODI

In the 50-over format of the game, Dhoni & Kohli are pretty evenly matched. So let’s have a look at how their individual stats compare:

Stat

MS Dhoni

Virat Kohli

Match

350

254

Innings

297

245

Runs

10773

12169

Avg

50.57

59.07

SR

87.56

93.25

Hundred

10

43

Fifty

73

62

Best

183*

183

In this comparison, both cricketers have crossed the 10000-run mark. But if we look closely at the numbers then Virat has slightly better stats. But, we have to consider that at most times Virat has always batted at number 3, which means he has had the opportunity to face more deliveries. MS Dhoni on the other hand comes to bat at 6 or 7, most times under huge pressure of finishing the match with a positive result. Therefore in ODIs Virat is the better batsman again, but Dhoni is the better finisher & has an immense record as well.

Dhoni vs Kohli in T20

The shortest format of the game again sees the numbers skewed in favour of Virat Kohli in the Kohli vs Dhoni comparison:

Stat

MS Dhoni

Virat Kohli

Match

98

95

Innings

85

87

Runs

1617

3227

Avg

37.60

52.04

SR

126.13

137.290

Hundred

Fifty

2

29

Best

56

94*

Even though the numbers heavily favour Virat Kohli in the T20 format of the game. MS Dhoni is more known for his captaincy & number of wins in this format of the game. He has captained India to a T20 World Cup victory.

Dhoni vs Kohli in IPL

The Indian T20 League numbers are good for Virat Kohli as always, but Dhoni betters him on the average part. Let’s see how they compare first:

Stat

MS Dhoni

Virat Kohli

Match

220

207

Innings

193

199

Runs

4746

6283

Avg

39.50

37.39

SR

135.8

129.94

Hundred

-

5

Fifty

23

42

Best

84*

113

Kohli’s numbers again take precedence over Dhoni’s, but we have to keep in mind that Dhoni has won 4 titles with his franchise Chennai. Kohli is yet to win an Indian T20 League title with Bangalore. Kohli has also recently left captaincy for Banglore. 

So Who is Better Batsman Dhoni or Kohli

If we consider the overall record, Virat Kohli wins this comparison hands down. He is by far the most successful batsman of the current generation. The current Indian team captain is ranked 6th in Tests in the ICC rankings & is ranked number 2 in ODIs. His current T20 rank is 11th on the ICC rankings.

MS Dhoni vs Virat Kohli - As Captains

The captaincy record heavily favours Dhoni because of the major tournaments that India has won under his leadership. Let’s see how they compare in the different formats:

Captaincy in Tests

Stat

MS Dhoni

Virat Kohli

Match

60

65

Wins

27

38

Loss

18

16

Draw

15

11

Win %

45

58.46

Virat Kohli has surpassed Dhoni’s number & win percentage as captain in the longest format of the game.

Captaincy in ODIs

Stat

MS Dhoni

Virat Kohli

Match

199

95

Wins

110

65

Losses

74

27

Tied

4

1

No Results

11

2

Win %

55.28

70.43

In ODI’s Virat’s win percentage is more, but Dhoni has led India in more matches & hence more number of wins. Virat still has a lot left to do there since he is still playing. Also, winning two ICC trophies makes Dhoni a better leader. Under MSD India played two world cups & won one, while under Virat India couldn’t go beyond the semi-finals in 2019.

Captaincy in T20s

Stat

MS Dhoni

Virat Kohli

Match

72

50

Wins

41

30

Losses

28

16

Tied

1

2

No results

2

2

Win %

56.94

64.58

Once more Virat leads the comparison by numbers but, if you look closely you will see that Dhoni has led India in more matches, hence the percentages are still to be justified. MS Dhoni has also led India in all 6 editions of the T20 world cup & won the inaugural edition as well. Kohli’s T20 World Cup run was poor as India crashed out of the group stages in 2021.

Captaincy in Indian T20 League

Stat

MS Dhoni

Virat Kohli

Match

204

140

Wins

121

64

Losses

82

69

Tied

-

3

No Results

1

4

Win %

59.60

48.16

MS Dhoni is considered the most successful captain in the Indian T20 League. He has captained & led his franchise to 12 out of 14 finals so far. Chennai has also won 4 titles under his leadership, while Virat has only managed one runner-up finish with Bangalore in 2016.

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