Mumbai, Nov 21: With Sachin Tendulkar's Test century drought extending to 16 months, Jacques Kallis has moved one step closer to the Master Blaster's record of 51 in the five-day format. Can the South African pip the Indian at the top?
In numbers: Tendulkar Vs Kallis
Kallis, the second batsman behind Tendulkar with most Test hundreds (44) will have another chance to extend that when Australia and South Africa face off in the second Test in Adelaide from November 22, Thursday.
Tendulkar's last Test ton came against South Africa in January, 2011.
The question most of the people flirting with, at the moment is whether Kallis can break Tendulkar's record of centuries?
Tendulkar too will be in his whites when India and England square off at Mumbai's Wankhede Stadium from Friday (November 23). If Tendulkar fails to register a century in his next few Tests and Kallis maintains his current form, the South African could overtake the Indian. However, it might not be in the near future.
Also, Kallis has a two-year advantage over Tendulkar in terms of age. Tendulkar is 39 now while Kallis is 37.
Before the England series, Tendulkar had said that he would take a call on his future after the England series. He has Australia series coming up early next year at home. He has seven Tests till March 2013 in India. Tendulkar will be hoping to increase the tally of centuries in those Tests.
If Tendulkar keeps failing to breach the 100-run mark, Kallis is one man who has more chance of matching or going past Tendulkar. The next in the list of highest century makers is Ricky Ponting of Australia with 41.
Tendulkar has played 191 Tests and scored 15,546 runs with 51 hundreds. Kallis, in his 156-Test journey, has accumulated 12,837 runs with 44 tons.
Among current batsman, Kallis' average of 57.30 is the best. Tendulkar's average is 54.93.
With Kallis just seven behind Tendulkar in century list, can the South African all-rounder go past the Mumbai man?