Leading a side is not always easy as it requires patience, command, respect, mutual respect and much more. We have seen over the years that great cricketers have failed when handed the command of their respective nation in international cricket while the mediocre ones have succeeded in their tenure as leaders. Here are 5 great players who failed as captains.
He was one of the best things which has happened to cricket. The former Indian captain was class apart during his international career as a batsman. He holds numerous world records in Test and ODI cricket. However, his captaincy record is completely different from his batting record. Team India went through torrid times when he was the captain of the team. Despite boosting some of the great players of his time, he couldn’t lead India to success. The little master had two spells as leader of the side. The first one was in 1996 which lasted poorly as India failed to produce any good results. He was again appointed in 1999 before the Australian tour but once again, the results didn’t come. The sub-continent team was whitewashed in the three match Test series by Australia. The continued failures forced him to resign from his post. He won just 23 ODIs out of 73 while the legendary batsman tasted success in just 4 Test out of 23 in his captaincy Tenure. The captaincy arm-band was not lucky for him despite his best efforts. He was replaced by Sourav Ganguly.
He could have been one of the best allrounders had injuries not cut short his promising career. He won several games for his side as a player but when it comes to captaincy, there was no respite for him. However, he started brilliantly as captain of the side. The first task was on the Indian soil where the Test series ended 1-1. The world thought that one of the best English leader has arrived but this happiness was cut short when the same team lost the sevenmatch ODI series 5-1 with Flintoff being rested for two matches. There was more misery in store for him as Australia whitewashed England in the Ashes. His only other victory in the Test matches came against Sri Lanka. The English team went on to win the Tri-national commonwealth bank series in Australia which was the only bright spot in his captaincy career. He was replaced by Michael Vaughan.
He was quality fast bowler and a handy batsman down the order. Heath Streak had pace, line and length to trouble the batsman. The medium pacer finished his career with bowling averages of 28 and 29 in Tests and ODIs, which stamped his authority as the greatest fast bowler. From 2000 to 2004, he led his country in 68 ODIs, winning just 18 and losing 47. He had a terrible record in Test matches as well. Zimbabwe played 21 Test matches in his leadership but the total win count stood at 4 while the team tasted defeat in 11. Despite having the services of the best players, Streak was not able to win matches on regular basis. He was replaced by Tatenda Taibu.
He could have been the best batsman in the history of the game but Sachin Tendulkar came in his way. Still, he could be labeled as one of the greats of the game. The left hand batsman holds the individual record of highest score in Test matches and first class cricket. There were no question mark on his caliber as a batsman but he had to struggle in the field of leadership. Brian Lara enjoyed some success in the ODIs with a 50% win percentage from 125 ODls, spanning over a period of 13 years. However, it was Test matches where he was found wanting. He won just 10 games out of 47 and lost 26 as leader of the side. He was one of the best batsmen in this format of the game but couldn’t lead his side properly. Despite having an ordinary track record, he captained the side for 9 years from 1997 to 2006. He was replaced by Chris Gayle.
His appointment in place of Brian Lara was seen with more positives as he had attacking mindset. It was believed that he would lead West Indies to new heights. However, he turned out to be a failure. Gayle led West Indies in 20 Test matches, winning just 3 and losing 9. The ODI record was even worse. The left hand batsman captained his team in 53 ODIs winning just 17 and losing 30 games. He tried his best but his decisions always backfired and resulted in failures.