In former Australia captain Ricky Ponting's view West Indian legend Brian Lara was a bigger match-winner than India's Sachin Tendulkar but contrary to his belief, statistics of the two batting greats tell a totally different story.
"Sachin and Lara were two stand-out batsmen for me. Lara won more games for his team than Sachin probably has. I'd lose more sleep as captain knowing Lara was coming into bat next day than I would with Sachin," Ponting told a newspaper recently.
Tendulkar, who has played 198 Tests, is far ahead of his once contemporary West Indian (131) when statistics of the two are compared.
The statistics of Tests show that West Indies, in Lara's presence, have won 24.42 per cent matches while with Tendulkar in the side, India have tasted victory in 35.35 per cent of their games.
If the performance in these matches is considered, Lara's contribution to his side's victories have been 24.50 per cent of his total Test runs (11953) while Tendulkar's 37.01 per cent career runs (15837) have benefited India.
Out of the hundred tons Tendulkar has scored in his international career so far, 53 of them have come in matches that India won. 20 of his 51 Test centuries have helped India triumph, which comes to 39.01 per cent.
In Lara's case, only eight of his 34 Test hundreds (23.52 per cent) have guided West Indies to victory.
It is argued that Lara's effort was often not complimented by his teammates, which resulted in his side's defeat in 63 Tests (48.01 per cent) out of the 131 matches he played. Lara's contribution in these matches were 44.47 per cent of his total runs. Interestingly, 14 hundreds from the Caribbean southpaw have come in losing cause.
When compared to Tendulkar, India have faced defeat in 56 Tests which is just 28.28 per cent of his total matches. Tendulkar has made 4088 runs, including 11 hundreds, in these encounters.