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Player Battles: Steve Waugh vs Mark Taylor

Waugh and Taylor were captains who made a great impact on the Australian team with the bat and their leadership.

Steve Waugh and Mark Taylor led the Australian team in the 90s and 2000s

The Australian cricket team under Ricky Ponting is still considered one of the toughest team in cricketing history. Under his captaincy, Australia won 48 out of 77 Test matches and outperformed every other cricketing nation in their own backyard as well as on their travels. 

But, the seed of this domination was planted by two of his predecessors: Mark Taylor and Steve Waugh. One was an astute leader known for his captaincy skills; the other was an inspirational performer, making a mark with his all-round abilities.

Even though ‘comparison is the death of joy’ as Mark Twain had said once, here is an attempt to analyse these two great skippers:


#1 Captaincy record

Australian cricketer Mark Taylor in action during the 1st Test Match of the Ashes, June 1997. England v Australia at Birmingham. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
Taylor made his Test debut in 1989

Mark Taylor got into the captain’s shoe right after the retirement of Allan Border. Border taught the Australians how to win; Taylor ensured that this winning turned into a habit of success. After him, Steve Waugh was given the job to lead the team, who slowly and steadily turned this habit into an era of world domination.

Both Taylor and Waugh were born to lead their team to ultimate glory. Taylor led Australia in 50 Test matches from 1992 to 1999, while Waugh was at the helm of the Australian cricket team in 57 Test matches.

During their careers as captain, both the captains scored some magnificent wins both at home and away. Taylor led Australia to victory against West Indies in 1995 (first test series win in West Indies since 1973), along with wins in South Africa, England, Pakistan. Waugh helped Australia to win a Test series in New Zealand, South Africa, Pakistan, and home series in Australia. 

Here is a look at the captaincy records of both the skippers:

Performance as captain
Test matches as captainMark TaylorSteve Waugh
Total matches5057
Win2641
Loss139
Draw/NR117
W/L2.04.6

Under Taylor’s captaincy, Australia won 9 out of 23 away matches, but Waugh went on to improve this number to 19 out of 28.

Out of these nine losses Waugh faced, three were inflicted by team India (2 in India and 1 in Australia).

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