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5 great Indian cricketers who never captained the country

Despite their individual brilliance, these players never got the mantle of the team.

The role of a captain in cricket is very similar to that of manager in football. The individual is responsible for galvanising the team, formulate strategies and eek out tactics when it matters the most on the field.

Captaincy is more than sorting out the field placements and deciding the team combination. It is more about man management and extracting the best out of every individual. It is more like challenging the team members and creating an environment of camaraderie within the group.

Over the years, the Indian cricket team have been lucky to be bestowed with leaders who have been synonymous with the teams they have led. These men have got the best out of the players, and the results have reflected their influence over the team. And amidst all this, they have never let their performance dip, well, on the contrary, the performances have grown.

However, there have been few players who were possible legends in their own right but have never been handed the reins of the team. They might consider themselves unlucky in this aspect, but call it their fate, there have been better people around at that time.

Here in this list, we look at 5 such players.

#1 Zaheer Khan

Zaheer Khan

Arguably the best fast bowler from India after Kapil Dev, Zaheer came in like a breath of fresh air, and right from his debut, he displayed his potential and prowess.

From late swinging ball to toe-crushing yorkers, Zaheer had it all in his repertoire. He was a proverbial menace for the left-handed batsman, and the records of Graeme Smith and Andrew Strauss against Zaheer, are a testament to his ability.

And as he matured, and assumed a more senior role in the team, the Baroda man was always seen speaking with young bowlers and mentoring them along the way. He was the unofficial 'bowlers captain', a title given to him by MS Dhoni. However, he was never considered to be the leader of the team, probably because there was always a Sourav Ganguly, Rahul Dravid, Anil Kumble and then MS Dhoni along the way.

Zaheer has been the captain of Mumbai Ranji team, and very recently was appointed the captain of Delhi Daredevils. He showed his leadership potential and the ability to come up with deft tactics, which was an indication of his abilities. He had precise plans for each batsman, and never hesitated to experiment, a positive trait of any captain.

Unfortunately, a leader India could never have!

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