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Top 5 Successful ODI Captain in Indian Cricket

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Buvanesh Thiraviam

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Jun 02, 2024


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The Indian Cricket Team finished runners-up in the recently concluded 2023 ODI World Cup, and they have won the CWC twice under Kapil Dev and MS Dhoni.

In this article, we will talk about the top 5 successful ODI captains in Indian cricket. 

#5 Sourav Ganguly

As the ODI skipper, Sourav Ganguly won 76 matches for India. He led them in 146 matches and lost 65. Under Ganguly, India reached the finals of the 2003 cricket World Cup for the first time since 1983. Although the team failed to replicate the magic of the 1983 World Cup final, Sourav Ganguly showed India a way to go forward in the ODI.

Before the 2003 CWC, Ganguly led India to the finals of the Champions Trophy 2002, which was shared with Sri Lanka as the final was washed out. Under Ganguly, India also clinched the NatWest series win against England. After the win at the Lords, Ganguly came up with his iconic celebration, waving his shirt from the balcony.

#4 Virat Kohli

Virat Kohli led India in 95 ODIs, winning 65 matches and losing 27. In his first ICC tournament as the Indian skipper, Virat Kohli led his team to the finals of the 2017 Champions Trophy, losing to Pakistan. In the Cricket World Cup 2019, Virat Kohli took the team to the semi-finals but lost the match to New Zealand. In December 2021, Virat Kohli was replaced by Rohit Sharma as the ODI captain.

Under Virat Kohli, India won the ODI series in South Africa, New Zealand, and Australia. Virat Kohli, as an ODI captain, had an average of 72 with the bat, while his career average is around 59.

#3 Kapil Dev

Indian cricket will remain forever grateful to Kapil Dev; under him, India won their first-ever Cricket World Cup in the year 1983. Kapil Dev led India in 74 matches, winning 39 and losing 33 games. Kapil Dev’s knock of 175 runs against Zimbabwe is one of the most iconic knocks ever played in Indian cricket history and even in cricket World Cup history.

As a captain, Dev took 91 wickets. His best bowling performance came against Australia in the 1983 World Cup, when he took a five-wicket haul while giving away 43 runs.

#2 Rohit Sharma

Rohit Sharma has led India in 45 ODIs so far, winning 34 and losing 10. As captain of the Cricket World Cup 2023, Rohit Sharma won 10 consecutive matches before losing the final. Under Rohit Sharma, India won the Asia Cup twice: once in 2018 and again in 2023.

Rohit Sharma, as a captain, averages 55 with the bat while playing as a player; his average was 48. Rohit Sharma was the second-highest run scorer in the CWC 2023. In the year 2022, Rohit led India to an ODI series win over England.

#1 MS Dhoni

India won their second Cricket World Cup under MS Dhoni in 2011, ending the 28-year drought of not winning the CWC. MS Dhoni captained India in a total of 200 games, winning 110 out of them and losing 74. Dhoni didn’t stop after winning the CWC 2011; he also won the Champions Trophy 2013 for the Indian team as the skipper. He showed his masterclass by defending a low total in a rain-marred final against England.

Before 2011, Dhoni won the Asia Cup in 2010 by beating Sri Lanka in the finals by 81 runs. As a batter, Dhoni won the Player of the Match award for India in the CWC 2011 Final; he scored 91* runs in the run-chase of 275 runs.

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