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5 captains who succeeded in one format but didn't in another

These captains had a mixed captaincy stint in all formats combined.


by Neelabhra Roy

Mike getting

In cricket, the role of captain is extremely pivotal as he’s the one who masterminds the team’s strategies. Probably one of the reasons why the captain is lifted on the nation’s shoulders after the team wins a match and why the captain is blamed following a loss.

Over the years, cricket has witnessed many great captains leading their team and some of them have captained the team in more than one format. However, a few captains have had mixed stints of captaincy with their team as while they have excelled as a leader in one format, the same cannot be said of another format.

Here is a list of five captains who succeeded in one format but failed to do so in another.

#5 Darren Sammy

darren sammy

Darren Sammy has been one of the best captains in T20 cricket. He was handed the T20 captaincy in 2011 and a year later led the West Indies to victory at the 2012 ICC World T20 in Sri Lanka. The Windies had a decent outing at the 2014 ICC World T20 where they reached the semi-finals but they weren’t looking good prior to the 2016 edition due to disputes with the WICB.

Hence, not many expected them to put up a good show. However, Sammy and the West Indies had the last laugh as they won their second T20 title, beating England in the final. Sammy didn’t have a very good tournament performance-wise but was brilliant in captaincy and is the only captain to have won two T20 world cups.

In the 47 T20 matches that Sammy has captained, he has won 27, tied 1 and lost 17, thus having a win percentage of 57.44%

However, the same cannot be said of his captaincy performances in Tests and ODIs. Being given the captaincy of the Test and ODI team in 2010, Sammy’s performance hasn’t been very good. In the 30 tests that he has captained, Sammy has won only eight of them with five of them coming against Bangladesh and Zimbabwe.

In the 51 ODIs that he has captained, Sammy has a win percentage of 37.25%, winning 19 and losing 30 with one match each being tied and abandoned. He was removed from the Test and ODI captaincy in 2013 before being surprisingly axed as the T20 captain in 2016.

#4 Daniel Vettori


Former New Zealand skipper is one of the best all-rounders New Zealand have ever produced and during his prime was one of the world’s finest all-rounders. Following the retirement of veteran Stephen Fleming, the captaincy was handed over to Vettori in all three formats.

As captain, Vettori led New Zealand to the semi-finals of the 2007 ICC World T20 and the 2011 World Cup which was considered a surprise as the Kiwis had beaten one of the tournament favorites South Africa in the quarter-finals. In the 82 ODIs that he has captained, Vettori has a win percentage of 50%, winning 41 and losing 33 with one match being tied and seven being abandoned.

In T20Is, Vettori has a win percentage of 46.43%, having won 13, lost 13 and two matches being tied.

Vettori’s performances as captain in the limited overs formats have been decent but the same cannot be said of his captaincy in the longer format. Out of the 32 tests Vettori has captained, he has won only 6 of them, drawn 10 of them and lost 16 of them.

Out of his six wins, three of them have come against minnows Bangladesh and both of his series wins as a captain have also come against Bangladesh. Vettori left the New Zealand captaincy after the 2011 Cricket World Cup.


#3 Brian Lara


One of the greatest batsmen to have ever played the sport, Brian Lara did not have a very successful stint as the West Indies captain with his only success being winning the 2004 ICC Champions Trophy. However, he led the Windies to some brilliant victories in his stints as captain.

Lara was made the regular skipper of the side in 2003 after the retirement of Carl Hooper. Lara’s captaincy records in ODIs have been pretty decent, with 59 wins and as many losses in 125 matches with seven being abandoned.

The legendary batsman was first handed the test captaincy in 1996 and had a good performance in his first two series, winning both of them. However, West Indies’ performances began to deteriorate during the early 2000s. In the 47 test matches that Lara captained, he won 10 of them and lost 26 of them with 11 matches being drawn.

Since he became the regular test skipper during the 2002-03 season, Lara won only four of the 29 tests he captained.


#2 Kapil Dev


Kapil Dev

Yes! One of India’s greatest captains Kapil Dev also makes this list. On being given the captaincy at the age of 23, Kapil Dev gave Indian cricket fans one of their most memorable moments by winning the 1983 Cricket World Cup after beating the mighty West Indies team in the final at Lord’s.

He was also the skipper during the 1987 World Cup but this time, India’s path was cut short in the semi-finals against England which was the last match Kapil Dev ever captained. In the 74 ODIs that he captained, Kapil had a win percentage of 52.70%, winning 39 of them and losing 33 of them with two matches being abandoned.

However, Kapil Dev’s captaincy stint in tests wasn’t a very memorable one. He had to wait for four years for his first win as test captain. Out of the 34 matches that he played, he won only four of them, lost seven of them and drew 23 of them.

However, his very first wins as captain were quite memorable ones as they came against England at England. Even though Kapil Dev is regarded as one of India’s best captains in ODI cricket, his numbers as test captain are enough to suggest that his captaincy was quite subdued in the longer format.


#1 Mike Gatting


Mike Gatting

Mike Gatting was one of England’s best batsmen during the 1980s and he was given the national team captaincy in 1986, succeeding David Gower. As captain, Gatting very nearly led England to their first ever World Cup win as he led the team to the final against Australia which they lost by just seven runs with Gatting’s dismissal turning out to be a turning point in the match.

Out of the 37 ODIs he captained, Gatting had a win percentage of 70.27%, winning 26 and losing 11.

However, Gatting’s stint as England’s test skipper was not a very good one. He captained in 23 tests from 1986-1988 but had a very poor win percentage of just 8.69%. He won only two test matches, losing five and drawing 18 of them. Both of his test wins as captain came in England’s successful Ashes campaign against Australia in Australia.

He was axed from the captaincy in 1988.