Former Indian pacer S Sreesanth has disagreed with Usman Khawaja’s assessment of Virat Kohli being better than Sachin Tendulkar in ODIs. Sreesanth argued that Tendulkar faced tougher bowlers in his era and would have scored even more centuries if he played today. Kohli is on the cusp of equaling Tendulkar’s record of 49 ODI centuries, but Sreesanth believes that the two players cannot be compared because they played in different eras.
“Never [no comparison],” S Sreesanth said in a conversation with Sportskeeda. “Very simple theory. Virat is a legend of the modern era. He has got a lot of records, but if we look at the standard of bowling, the one that Sachin faced and the one Virat is facing, there is a huge difference. The pressure situation is the same, but the quality of bowling… There are so many hundreds being scored even in the IPL.”
S Sreesanth pointed out that Tendulkar faced legendary bowlers like Wasim Akram, Glenn McGrath, and Shane Warne, while Kohli has not faced bowlers of that caliber on a regular basis.
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“Virat cannot be compared with Sachin because the difference in the two eras is huge,” S Sreesanth said. “Name one bowler who can bowl six balls in an over at the same spot. The perfection with which Wasim Akram, Glenn McGrath, and Shane Warne bowled; Sachin answered all of them with his bat. Virat is the same, but I don’t remember Sachin getting out to the same bowler again and again.”
Sreesanth concluded by saying that Tendulkar would have scored even more centuries if he had played in today’s era, with better pitches and support staff.
“If Sachin had batted on such wickets, he would have made 200 hundreds and not 100 hundreds,” S Sreesanth said. “I am not saying anything against Virat, but he himself would accept that if so many matches were played back then in a year, add to it the support staff and facilities to keep yourself younger, you can never compare Sachin to Kohli.”
Sachin Tendulkar accumulated 18,426 runs across 452 ODI innings with an average of 44.83, whereas Virat Kohli boasts 13,437 runs in 274 innings with a remarkable average of 58.16.