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2012 AFC Challenge Cup: Who should captain India?

The final 23 India players were announced yesterday for the 2012 AFC Challenge Cup in Nepal, but head coach Savio Medeira did not name his captain for the tournament. Reasons for this are currently unknown, but due to this fact discussions have started...

The final 23 India players were announced yesterday for the 2012 AFC Challenge Cup in Nepal, but head coach Savio Medeira did not name his captain for the tournament. Reasons for this are currently unknown, but due to this fact discussions have started on who could or should lead India into this important tournament as the big prize would be not winning the title, but rather participation in the 2015 AFC Asian Cup in Australia.

Savio might have decided on who would be his captain, but having not announced the Team India captain has started interesting discussions on the matter. Yesterday there was a Twitter debate on who is best in this squad to lead the team in the upcoming AFC Challenge Cup.

In the last couple of international friendlies Samir Naik (vs Oman) and Gouramangi Singh (vs Azerbaijan) both led the team for the first time onto the field with Sunil Chhetri rested as he is still to recover fully from an injury, who had captained India to the SAFF Cup title in December.

In many countries there is an unofficial rule that the player with the most number of international caps should captain a country, a fair rule some might say; but I think that the captain needs to be leader within the team who might have a few less internationals but can positively influence a team.

If he hasn’t decided yet then Savio Medeira has to make a choice amongst maybe three/four players, who could captain the national side – Sunil Chhetri, Samir Naik, Syed Rahim Nabi, Gouramangi Singh.

I personally feel that Sunil Chhetri did a good job last December at the SAFF Cup, where he led from the front. Sunil has matured a lot, can lead a team and therefore he would be my choice as captain, while I would make allrounder Syed Rahim Nabi his vice-captain as he has the captains experience at club level and has been one of India’s most consistent performers in recent times.

Do you agree with me? Who would be your preferred choice as India captain???

Published with permission from Arunava Chaudhuri.

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