Two of the most successful IPL captains – Rohit Sharma and MS Dhoni – will face off in the 2020 IPL opener at Abu Dhabi on September 19 as Mumbai Indians take on Chennai Super Kings. But before the two resume their rivalry, let’s take a look at how all the current IPL captains stack up in comparison with each other.
Out of the current captains of the eight franchises – Dhoni, Rohit, Virat Kohli [Royal Challengers Bangalore], David Warner [Sunrisers Hyderabad], Dinesh Karthik [Kolkata Knight Riders], Steve Smith [Rajasthan Royals], Shreyas Iyer [Delhi Capitals] and KL Rahul [Kings XI Punjab] – Rahul is the only one yet to captain in an IPL match, which is why he doesn’t feature in the comparisons below.
MS Dhoni, understandably, leads the list, having captained CSK from 2008 to 2015 and again from 2018, and Rising Pune Supergiant in 2016, in a total of 174 matches. The 2017 IPL season was the only one where the wicketkeeper-batsman didn’t play as captain with Steve Smith leading the side to the final, where they lost to Mumbai Indians.
Wins as captain
Dhoni leads this list as well, with 104 wins in 174 matches captained. Rohit Sharma is the only other captain other than Dhoni and former KKR skipper Gautam Gambhir to have registered over 50 IPL wins as captain, with 60.
Steve Smith, who has captained Pune Warriors, Rajasthan Royals and Rising Pune Supergiant in a combined 29 matches, has the best win percentage of 65.5 and is the only captain with a 60+ win percentage. Dhoni is just shy of the 60 per cent mark and is second on the list which shows his consistency as the leader of a side, considering he has captained in 174 IPL matches.
Most runs in a season as captain
The 2016 IPL season saw Virat Kohli and David Warner take the top two spots in the list of the most runs by a captain in any T20 tournament. With 538 runs in the 2013 season, when Rohit Sharma took over the captaincy from Ricky Ponting during the tournament, puts him third while Dinesh Karthik’s 2018 season, when he led the side to the playoffs puts him fourth on this list.
Only three captains, so far, have managed to lead their team to more than one final while as many as 10 skippers have been to the IPL final once but only three of them – Warne, Gilchrist and Warner – have managed to register a win. Five players from the current lot have captained in an IPL final.
Rohit Sharma overtook MS Dhoni for a second time in terms of most titles won as captain as Mumbai got the better of CSK in the 2019 IPL final. Out of the current crop, Warner is the only captain other than Dhoni and Rohit to have won the IPL title.