Contact Us

Steading the ship: Best captains of the Indian Premier League so far

Let’s take a glance at the great leaders who inspired their teams in the Indian Premier League. Here are the best captains so far in IPL.

Last updated: 29.03.2019
Steading the ship: Best captains of the Indian Premier League so far | Sports Social Blog

The Indian Premier League is 12 years old and over these years, there have been some of the most scintillating displays on a cricket field. It has also been home to some great teams, characterized by both collective effort and individual brilliance. Another ingredient which sets apart these teams is exceptional leadership. So, let’s take a glance at the great leaders who inspired their teams in the Indian Premier League.

Mahendra Singh Dhoni:

This man needs no introduction at all. One of the greatest captains in the history of the game, Dhoni has led the Chennai Super Kings to the title thrice in 9 years. Another spectacular aspect of his success is conveyed by the fact that Chennai is the only team to qualify for the playoffs in every single season they played. In franchise-based league with auctions every year, teams are prone to suffer from instability and lack of affinity. Dhoni's strategy with regards to the team combination has been pretty simple, yet effective. He has been able to retain the core of the team every year and build the rest of the team around that core. The fact that Stephen Fleming has been their coach since the first seasons tells that their strategy extends to the coaching and support staff. Even so, it wasn’t always a walk in the park for Dhoni. In 2013, a team led by Justice Lodha found Chennai’s team principal Gurunath Meiyappan and Rajasthan Royals owner Raj Kundra guilty of illegal betting and were banned for life. Two years later, both these teams were banned for two years from participating in the Indian Premier League. A lot of speculations were thrown around and Dhoni's legacy was at the risk of getting married. 2018 was the year of the reinstatement of Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals back into the Indian Premier League. Dhoni, back as the captain of Chennai, led them to a record 3rd title and assured everyone that he still has it.

Gautam Gambhir:

Gautam Gambhir started his journey in the Indian Premier League with Delhi Daredevils and captained them in 2010. The following year, he was bought by Kolkata Knight Riders which turned out to be the most prominent moment in the franchise's history. Kolkata Knight Riders, an unfancied side, saw their fortunes turned around Gambhir' leadership. In their first year under Gambhir, they secured the third position in the league stage, having never done so before. Next year, Gambhir truly made his mark by leading Kolkata to their first IPL title by defeating the tournament favorites Chennai Super Kings in the final. His aggressive nature and intensity transcended into his captaincy and performance on the field. In 2014, he stopped King’s XI Punjab's juggernaut in the finals and led Kolkata to their second IPL title. Gambhir has now retired from all forms of the game, but he has had a lasting effect on the Kolkata Knight Riders.

Rohit Sharma:

Having played for Deccan Chargers for three years and winning an IPL title in 2009, Rohit Sharma was bought by Mumbai Indians in 2012. He took over the captaincy from Harbhajan Singh 2013 and led Mumbai to their first IPL title. Mumbai continued its dominance in T20 sector by winning their second Champions League T20 title the same year. Rohit’s budding aptitude for leadership was recognized by many cricket pundits and he was rewarded with the captaincy of the national team in the absence of Virat Kohli. He secured his position as one of the best captains in the Indian Premier League by winning the IPL title thrice, a record shared with Dhoni.

We have seen the birth of some new captains with enormous potential over the past couple of seasons like Shreyas Iyer, Ajinkya Rahane, Dinesh Karthik and Ravichandran Ashwin. The battle of leadership among them will make for great viewing as a spectator.

Chase Your Sport

Stay up-to-date on the latest sports news, stats, expert analysis and trends, including cricket, football, wrestling, tennis, basketball, Formula One and more. Find previews, schedules, results of upcoming events, and fantasy tips on Chase Your Sport.