The tenth season of the biggest T20 extravaganza, IPL 2017, is all set to get underway on the 5th of April. The T20 format challenges the captain as he has to be on top of his leadership all the time as the game can change within a matter of just a few balls. The cash-rich Indian domestic T20 competition has seen great success stories being scripted by inspirational leaders.
Shane Warne played an instrumental role in taking the underdogs Rajasthan Royals to the title in the inaugural edition.
Also Read: 5 most successful IPL captains
Kolkata Knight Riders only became serious contenders after they handed over the captaincy to Gautam Gambhir, under whom they went on to win the IPL twice. David Warner almost single-handedly took the Sunrisers Hyderabad to the summit in the 2016 edition. And Mahendra Singh Dhoni does not need an introduction when it comes to talking about successful captains.
We are all aware of the successful captains who have led their teams to titles in the past. The others who were not able to deliver the goods with the captain’s hat are seldom spoken about. There has also been much talk of foreign captains and whether or not they have been more successful than their Indian counterparts.
This list of the top 5 captains with the worst IPL captaincy record somewhat gives us a clue.
(Criteria: Captain in at least 10 matches; win percentage excludes no results and treats ties as half a win)
#5 Mahela Jayawardene
Teams: Kings XI Punjab, Kochi Tuskers Kerala, Delhi Daredevils
Matches: 30; Wins: 10; Losses: 19; Tie: 1; Win %: 35.00%
A prolific run-getter, the former captain of Sri Lanka, Mahela Jayawardene, could not replicate the success he had while leading his country in the IPL. He led the Punjab franchise in the 2010 edition and the team ended the season in the last position.
Leading the now defunct Kochi Tuskers Kerala in 2010, his team ended 8th out of the 10 teams. When he was at the helm of affairs at Delhi Daredevils, he managed just 6 victories and 11 losses in the 18 games spread across the 2012 and 2013 seasons.
#4 Kumar Sangakkara
Teams: Kings XI Punjab, Deccan Chargers, Sunrisers Hyderabad
Matches: 47; Wins: 15; Losses: 30; Tie: 2; Win %: 34.04%
Just like his countryman, Jayawardene, Sangakkara did not prove to be a successful captain in the IPL. Captaining the Kings XI Punjab in 2009 he managed seven wins and as many losses as the team closely missed out on a semi-final berth.
In 2012, when he was made in charge of the Deccan Chargers, the team finished second from last on the points table with just 4 wins and 11 losses in 16 matches.
Before being replaced by Cameron White in the 2013 season as the captain of the new franchise Sunrisers Hyderabad, Sangakkara led the team to 4 victories and 4 losses.
#3 Brendon McCullum
Teams: Kolkata Knight Riders, Gujarat Lions
Matches: 14; Wins: 3; Losses: 10; Tie: 1; Win %: 25.00%
Brendon McCullum, fondly known as ‘Bazz’ will remain one of the most destructive batsmen and the most inspirational captain in New Zealand’s cricketing history. The Kiwi batsman could not lead Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL fans as they had their worst season under him in 2009 and finished last with 3 wins and 10 losses.
In the only match he led his new franchise Gujarat Lions, in the absence of regular skipper Suresh Raina, his team were thrashed at the hands of Royal Challengers Bangalore as the Lions suffered a 144-run defeat.
#2 Aaron Finch
Team: Pune Warriors India
Matches: 10; Wins: 2; Losses: 8; Tie: 0; Win %: 20.00%
The No. 2 ranked T20I batsman, Aaron Finch miserably failed in his only stint as captain in the IPL. He was put in charge to lead the Pune Warriors India team in their third and the tournament’s sixth season in 2013.
After finishing second last and last in their previous two seasons, Finch had the responsibility of turning the team’s fortunes in their favour.
Ending the 2013 season second from bottom, it turned out to be their last appearance in the Indian domestic T20 tournament.
#1 Kevin Pietersen
Teams: Royal Challengers Bangalore, Delhi Daredevils
Matches: 17; Wins: 3; Losses: 14; Tie: 0; Win %: 17.64%
The swashbuckling South Africa-born English cricketer Kevin Pietersen was the most expensive buy in the IPL auction prior to the 2009 season in South Africa when he was picked up by the Royal Challengers Bangalore for a whopping $1.55m.
Leading RCB in 6 games, Pietersen managed 2 victories and suffered 4 losses. His most dreaded run with captaincy was when he was the leader of Delhi Daredevils in the 2014 season.
He had a solitary win to show for his efforts, and the team suffered 10 losses en route to their last position finish in the forgettable season.