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Mid-season captaincy changes in the IPL

Eoin Morgan and Dinesh Karthik swapped roles in IPL 2020. Image Credits: KKR
Eoin Morgan and Dinesh Karthik swapped roles in IPL 2020. Image Credits: KKR
Vyshakh K
ANALYST
Modified 17 Oct 2020, 18:00 IST
Top 5 / Top 10
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Eoin Morgan has taken over as the skipper of Kolkata Knight Riders after Dinesh Karthik stepped down this week. Dinesh Karthik's barren run with the bat has tempted him to hand over the reins to the World Cup-winning captain. This is not the first instance of a captain handing over the reigns mid-season in the Indian Premier League (IPL).

A captaincy change has worked wonders for some teams but while other teams have struggled after a captaincy change.

We look at mid-season captaincy changes in the IPL in previous editions of the tournament.

Anil Kumble takes over from Kevin Pieterson (Royal Challengers Bangalore, 2009)

Anil Kumble was appointed RCB skipper after Kevin Pietersen left for national duty in 2009.
Anil Kumble was appointed RCB skipper after Kevin Pietersen left for national duty in 2009.

Anil Kumble was appointed the Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper after Kevin Pietersen left for national duty mid-way through the season in 2009. Under the Englishmen's leadership, RCB struggled during the initial phase of the tournament, winning just two of their six matches.

The Royal Challengers had a change of fortunes under Kumble, winning six of their eight league games to finish third in the points table. RCB would go on to beat the Chennai Super Kings in the semifinals and eventually lost to the Deccan Chargers in the final.

Cameron White takes over from Kumar Sangakkara (Deccan Chargers, 2012)

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Cameron White replaced Kumar Sangakkara as DC
Cameron White replaced Kumar Sangakkara as DC's skipper in 2012.

Deccan Chargers skipper Kumara Sangakkara dropped himself from the team due to his struggles with the bat, handing over his reins to Cameron White in 2020 edition of the IPL. Despite the change in leadership, the Hyderabad-based franchise still went onto finished in 8th placed.

Virat Kohli takes over from Daniel Vettori (Royal Challengers Bangalore, 2012)

Daniel Vettori handed over the reins to a young Virat Kohli in 2012.
Daniel Vettori handed over the reins to a young Virat Kohli in 2012.

New Zealand's premium spinner Daniel Vettori benched himself to make way for legendary spinner Muttiah Muralitharan's inclusion in the RCB XI. A young and aggressive Virat Kohli took over the reins of the Challengers and kept them in contention for the play-offs in the 2012 edition of the IPL.

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A collapse by the batting department against Deccan in RCB's final game of the season led to a 5th place finish that season. RCB eventually reaped the rewards as Kohli led the franchise to two finals.

Rohit Sharma takes over from Ricky Ponting (Mumbai Indians, 2013)

Rohit Sharma led MI to their maiden IPL win after replacing Ponting as skipper.
Rohit Sharma led MI to their maiden IPL win after replacing Ponting as skipper.

Brought to the IPL in 2013, legendary Australian skipper Ricky Ponting was named the captain of the Mumbai Indians. Ponting was a spent force by this point in his career and a promising Rohit Sharma replaced him midway through the 2013 season.

The move paid dividends as Sharma powered the Mumbai Indians to their maiden IPL title. Rohit Sharma is currently the most successful captain in the history of the league, having led the Mumbai Indians to a record four IPL triumphs and two Champions League titles.

Darren Sammy takes over from Shikhar Dhawan (Sunrisers Hyderabad, 2014)

Darren Sammy became SRH captain midway through the 2014 IPL campaign.
Darren Sammy became SRH captain midway through the 2014 IPL campaign.
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Shikhar Dhawan's prolific international run led to him being named as the Sunrisers Hyderabad skipper. Having led the newly formed franchise to the playoffs in 2013, the southpaw couldn't replicate the magic and boldly stepped down in 2014.

Two-time T20 World Cup-winning West Indian captain Darren Sammy took over the reins from thereon and SRH finished 6th in the 2014 campaign with six wins and eight losses.

Murali Vijay takes over from David Miller (Kings XI Punjab, 2016)

Murali Vijay was named KXIP skipper after David Miller was sacked in 2016.
Murali Vijay was named KXIP skipper after David Miller was sacked in 2016.

The David Miller-led Kings XI Punjab succumbed to five defeats in their first six games in 2016. The South African international also struggled with the bat, scoring a mere 76 runs in six matches. Miller eventually faced the sack and Kings XI Punjab management named Murali Vijay as the new skipper.

Despite a change in personnel, KXIP's fortunes remained the same and they finished at the bottom of the league for a second straight year.

Shreyas Iyer takes over from Gautam Gambhir (Delhi Daredevils, 2018)

Gautam Gambhir made way for Shreyas Iyer in 2018.
Gautam Gambhir made way for Shreyas Iyer in 2018.
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Gautam Gambhir cemented his reputation as one of the best skippers in the history of IPL after leading Kolkata Knight Riders to two IPL titles in 2012 and 2014. Gambhir was made captain of the Delhi Daredevils after being let go by KKR in the 2018 auction.

The Indian international's second stint with his local franchise was doomed from the start, as Delhi won only one of their first six matches. Gambhir stepped down as captain and passed the baton to 23-year-old Shreyas Iyer, who led the rebranded Delhi Capitals to a third-place finish a year later.

Steve Smith takes over from Ajinkya Rahane (Rajasthan Royals, 2019)

Ajinkya Rahane
Ajinkya Rahane's sack paved way for Steve Smith's re-appointment as RR skipper.

Rajasthan Royals' Ajinkya Rahane retained his captaincy at the start of the 2019 IPL season as Steve Smith was returning after a ban due to a ball-tampering saga with the national team.

After a poor string of results, Rahane was axed from his position. Steve Smith took charge of the Royals midway through the campaign but the team still ended up 7th place in the league standings.

Published 17 Oct 2020, 18:00 IST
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