Few will dispute that the Indian Cricket Team under MS Dhoni went through one of its most successful phases. The Ranchi-born cricketer took over the reigns of the team after Anil Kumble announced his retirement from the game and tasted success not just at home, but also in overseas conditions.
Under Dhoni, with a team at peaking at the right time across departments, India not just won at home., but also registered wins in New Zealand, South Africa, Sri Lanka and deservingly climbed to the top of the rankings.
However, the tide shifts for every captain and Dhoni was no different either. Following India’s triumph in 2011 World Cup, he endured a torrid time in overseas trips, first with an ageing time and then with a young and emerging one.
India were blanked 4-0 both in England and Australia in 2011 and 2012 respectively and lost series in New Zealand in 2014, England once again in 2014 and Australia the same year.
At the end of 2014, Dhoni had had enough and not just relinquished his captaincy from the longer format, but also decided to call it quits from Test cricket.
That meant that Virat Kohli took over the reigns and ushered in a new era, at least in whites for India. On a temporary basis, at least, he had shown that brand of cricket he wished to display in the Adelaide Test of 2014, with a sparkling 141 in the fourth innings,which almost gave India the win, in their pursuit of 364.
Under Kohli’s tenure as full-time skipper, India have been on the ascent, having lost just a solitary game to Sri Lanka in Galle in August 2015. Since that defeat, the Test team have been on an unbeaten run of 15 matches, having won 9 and drawn 6 of them.
After the loss in Galle, Kohli and his men came back to win back-to-back Tests and won the Test series 2-1, they then defeated South Africa 3-0 at home with the other Test in Bengaluru producing no result, thanks to heavy rain.
In July, Kohli and his men embarked on a four-match Test series to the West Indies and won the first and the third Tests to clinch the series 2-0. They returned home and won the home series against New Zealand 3-0 and following a slight hiccup against England in Rajkot, clinched the Test in Vizag by 246 runs to go 1-0 up.
That win was the 15th Test under him that India had been unbeaten and it now means, that if India don’t lose any of the remaining Tests against England in the ongoing series, they will certainly draw level with Sunil Gavaskar’s all time Indian record of 18 Tests without a loss in this series itself and even go past him, in 2017 when India are scheduled to play 5 Tests in the early part.
Considering the form of the present India team, it is certainly not beyond Kohli to go past Gavaskar and provide the supporters of Indian with many more special moments.
|No.||Captain||Unbeaten matches||Record||Duration of streak|
|1.||Sunil Gavaskar||18||6 wins, 12 draws||December 1978 to January 1981|
|2.||Kapil Dev||17||4 wins, 12 draws,1 tie||September 1985 to March 1987|
|3.||Virat Kohli||15*||11 wins, 4 draws||August 2015 to November 2016*|
|4.||Mohammad Azharuddin||14||9 wins, 5 draws||January 1993 to December 1994|
|5||MS Dhoni||11||8 wins, 3 draws||November 2008 to February 2010|