Skip to main content

Latest News

IPL: 5 instances when captains led their teams to victory

Shane Warne. (Photo Source: Twitter/IPL)

In the game of cricket, a captain is always expected to lead his side from the front and hand his team success. In crunch situations, his role is to step up and deliver impactful results with his job. Indian Premier League (IPL) fans have witnessed numerous captaincy brilliance in 16 years of the cash-rich league.

Skippers such as MS Dhoni, David Warner, and Rohit Sharma proved their leadership skills, guiding their teams to the coveted trophy. After 16 years of the league, IPL supporters have witnessed exceptional title wins of Dhoni, Rohit, and Gautam Gambhir as skippers but it’s time to recall some swashbuckling match-winning innings from captains.

Here are five instances when captains produced match-winning innings for their teams

5. Gautam Gambhir’s 93 against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in 2012

Gautam Gambhir. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

When Kolkata Knight Riders won their maiden IPL trophy in 2012, Gautam Gambhir made vital contributions as batter and skipper. With the bat, he ended up as the second-leading run-getter with 590 runs in 17 matches at a superb strike rate of 143.55.

Against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) at the iconic Eden Gardens, he produced the best IPL knock of his career and guided Kolkata to a convincing 47-run win. Batting first after winning the toss, Kolkata elected to bat first and Gambhir launched an onslaught as an opener.

Along with Brendon McCullum, he stitched a crucial 95 run-stand in 10.3 overs. After McCullum’s dismissal, Gambhir stood at the crease and completed his half-century in just 28 balls. The veteran went back to the pavilion in the 19th over of the game after racking up 93 off just 51. Riding on his excellent batting, KKR erected 190 runs on the board in 20 overs. Gambhir also received the Player of the Match award for his magnificent batting performance in the game.

4. Shane Warne’s 3/19 against Punjab Kings (PBKS) in 2008

Shane Warne. (Photo Source: Twitter/IPL)

Rajasthan Royals became the first IPL champions in 2008 under Shane Warne‘s captaincy. RR’s scintillating campaign began with a nine-wicket defeat at the hands of Delhi Capitals (DC) at the Arun Jaitley Stadium (then Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium). Following the humiliating loss at the hands of Delhi, Royals played an aggressive brand of cricket and won five consecutive games.

In their second IPL game, Rajasthan registered a comprehensive six-wicket win, and Shane Watson became the Player of the Match for his unbeaten 76 off 49. The unsung hero of RR’s victory was captain Warne, who bowled an economical spell on Jaipur’s batting-friendly turf. 

Winning the toss, Punjab skipper Yuvraj Singh elected to bat first. The visitors got a stable start but the Australia legend’s tight bowling restricted Rajasthan to 166. In his four-over spell, Warne splurged only 19 runs and picked up the prized scalps of Kumar Sangakkara, James Hopes, and Yuvraj Singh. 

3.  Virat Kohli’s 100 against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in 2019

Virat Kohli and Dinesh Karthik. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

In the 2019 IPL, Virat Kohli looked fabulous with his bat against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at the iconic Eden Gardens. Against the two-time champions, the Virat Kohli-led side batted first and posted 213 runs on the board. Challengers lost their opener Parthiv Patel early but Kohli showed nerves of steel and took Kolkata’s quality bowling attack to the cleaners.

Along with Moeen Ali, he built a 90-run partnership in just 43 deliveries that helped the team to post the quality total on the board. Kohli scored his fifth IPL ton and stood at the crease until the last delivery of the game. The RCB skipper’s 100-run knock off 58 balls emboldened his bowlers as they contained the hosts on 203.

2. MS Dhoni’s unbeaten 54 against Punjab Kings (PBKS) in 2010

MS Dhoni and Albie Morkel. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

Chennai Super Kings won their maiden IPL trophy in 2010. The Yellow Army went through ups and downs during their journey but in the end, they pulled off the trophy with a magnificent team effort. In the group round, when CSK and Punjab Kings (PBKS) met each other in Dharamsala, the former had to win the game to qualify for the knockouts.

In the do-or-die contest, Super Kings skipper MS Dhoni won the toss and elected to field first. Riding on Shaun Marsh’s unbeaten 88 off 57 and Irfan Pathan’s unbeaten 44 off 27, Punjab delivered a target of 193 to the visitors. Chasing the huge score, Chennai lost their openers Matthew Hayden and Murali Vijay early.

However, Suresh Raina and S Badrinath held their nerves and stitched a crucial 62-run stand. Both batters returned to the dugout after producing impactful knocks. Batting at number five, Dhoni exhibited his formidable side and took CSK home with his half-century. His unbeaten 54-run innings came in just 29 balls. 

In the last over, CSK were required 16 to win and Dhoni showcased his mettle against Irfan, scoring 18 runs with three boundaries off just four balls. The star batter also received the Player of the Match award for his plucky innings.

1. David Warner’s 69 against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in 2016

David Warner. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

David Warner looked exceptional as a batter in the 2016 IPL and helped Sunrisers Hyderabad emerge as champions. The Aussie also became the second-leading run-getter in the competition, notching up 848 runs in 17 matches at a strike rate of 151.42.

In the eight-run triumph against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the final held at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, he came heavily on bowlers and helped the Orange Army post a heavy total of 208 runs on the board. 

The veteran displayed an aggressive approach and plundered runs from RCB bowlers. Facing 38 deliveries, he scored 69 runs with eight fours and three maximums. His innings also instilled confidence in Yuvraj Singh and Ben Cutting, who went on to play rapid knocks for the team.

More in Latest News