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3 statistics that reinforce India's dominance in Test cricket since 2016

Yash Mittal
ANALYST
Feature
Timeless

Team India pose with the Border-Gavaskar Trophy after their historic win Down Under
Team India pose with the Border-Gavaskar Trophy after their historic win Down Under

7 months. 16 bilateral ODIs. 8 T20Is. IPL. World Cup. After a seven-month hiatus, one that has seen the razzmatazz of white-ball cricket, the World No. 1 Test side will be back in the purest format of the game when they take on the West Indies at North Sound, Antigua on August 22. The match will also kick-start India's campaign for the World Test Championship.

The Men in Blue hold the Test mace and the numero uno spot in the Test rankings, which is a validation of their dominance in the longest format of the game.

The last India were in the West Indies, Virat Kohli got the first of his six Test double hundreds as he led his side to two Test wins in a single series in the Caribbean for the first time. That tour kick-started India's dominance in Test cricket. While there have been disappointments: most notably the losses in South Africa [1-2] and England [1-4], the Men in Blue have easily been the most consistent side in world cricket since 2016.

Here's a look at three statistics that reinforce India's dominance in Test cricket since 2016:

#3 Most hundreds by a batting unit - 53

Kohli and Pujara have been the spearheads
Kohli and Pujara have been the spearheads

India have been the best batting unit since 1st January 2016 with a cumulative average of 37.61, and 53 tons between them.

It's true that the opening combination has been a cause of concern for the side - especially in overseas tours of SENA countries. But the penchant of the Indian batsmen for big runs and 'daddy' hundreds, led by their captain Virat Kohli and No. 3 Cheteshwar Pujara, has been a standout feature in the past three years.

Kohli [3619 runs in 36 Tests] and Pujara [3006 runs in 36 Tests] have been the spearheads as far as the Indian batting is concerned. They are the second and third highest run-getters in the world respectively during the said time frame.

While Pujara's 521 runs in 4 Tests were instrumental in setting up India's maiden series win Down Under last summer, no one in world cricket has scored more hundreds [14], aggregated 500+ runs in more series [vs England at home in 2016, vs Sri Lanka at home in 2017 and vs England in England in 2018] or double hundreds [6] than Kohli since 2016.

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The tendency of the Indian batters to rack up hundreds [53; next best is Australia with 38] has been directly proportional with their team putting up mountains of runs. Since January 2016, no team has racked up more 500+ totals [13] than India.

While Ravindra Jadeja has been a revelation with the bat, having scored 1012 runs at an average of 42.16, vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane has witnessed a sharp dip in his fortunes. The right-hander has managed just 1869 runs in nearly the same innings [55] as Kohli and Pujara at an average of 37.38, and is yet to score a hundred since his 188 against New Zealand in Indore nearly three years ago.

Also see - Live cricket score

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