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Same or Different Captains in different formats in Cricket?

There has always been a long debate that is there a need for different captains in different formats in cricket or not. Different people have different views. This Also has been problem for cricket boards too as they had to decide about captains in different formats. Almost every test nation side had experienced this issue.

Here are some opinion of cricket experts regarding it:

  • “I haven’t given any advice to the PCB over the captaincy issue but I think the perfect man for the job is one who can lead in all three formats,” says Inzimam ul Haq
  • “Time has come for the selectors to decide three captains for three formats. At the moment there is too much cricket, too many formats,” Sourav Ganguly

An Argument on ‘There Should be different captains of each Format?’

Here are following arguments which will prove that it is necessary:

A player has specific abilities and not every player is specialized in every format of the game. So when selectors pick up the team they might get multiple captains for different formats. The main argument is that whether it is right or wrong.

There are 3 formats of Cricket which are played at INTL level: Test (Unlimited Overs), ODI (50 overs), T20 (20 overs) per side. I think that there should be different captains because you need player according to the format as in T20 you need an aggressive player because It is a fast cricket, you don’t have much time to decide or to try anything. A young, energetic mind could be suitable for this format as you should try to improvise new things that could be only possible if the player is not used to of playing defensive or dawdling cricket.

A player should be intelligent enough who can make quick decision at tough times or who can go for a risk. Also in T20I you could not afford to make bad decision because as it could change the situation of the game. Captains should be quick and concentrate on the game, they should be vigilant enough to guide the bowlers and maintain field because in T20I you have to keep moving your fielders after every ball or over most of the times. In this shorter format of the game only a fearless captain could lead the team who could go all-out attack on opposition and should be valiant enough to take risks.

While if we talk about Test Cricket, a cool and calm captain is required who could handle the team while struggling on the field. Captain should be experienced enough who could run the team smoothly on the field for a longer period. He should have good temperament who takes team together as a one unit. He should be supportive to the player and a good rotation of bowlers could help his team get breakthrough.  He should not be aggressive like T20Is because on some places you have to play according to conditions and situations.

A test captain should know how to make good use of available bowlers and when to attack (with the new ball or to a new batsman at the crease) or when to defend. He should be careful that over attacking could cost them. Along with being persistent, a captain should also have match awareness and should go for winning the match most of the times. As Test cricket is game of patience and test, a captain should be firm and solid and should wait for an opportunity to grasp. Therefore, a levelheaded and steady captain will be required for this position.

So this proves that there should be different captains for different formats or else if there could be a one captain for test and one captain for limited overs (ODI and T20) as it would lessen burden on one captain and it will help countries like Pakistan to test young brain like all other countries does.

An Argument on ‘There Should be Same captain of each Format?’

Here are following arguments which will say that it worth more to have a one captain:

There had been a counter argument too that there should be one captain who should lead in all the formats because of some reasons. The team with 2-3 captains will always struggle because there will be lack of co-ordination between the players and they will be mixed with 2 different kinds of approaches. There will lack of comradery with different captains and players will find also difficult to settle under different captains.

Some could affect management and coaching staff too as they will find it difficult to tackle the different mindsets of multiple captains. Captains also found it hard to gel up with their players as they are used to of different approach under other captains. It will definitely cause a unity issue as people will try to compare captains with their performances i.e. Misbah and Afridi, it will be waste as it would be of no use because both captains are of different formats.

Having same captain ensures the captains authority over the team. It also certifies one-dimension cricket in all formats. It will eventually lead to lesser politics if only one captain will lead the national side. Captain will have more control as he could suggest changes or could work according to proper planning. Due to poor performance only one captain should be blamed otherwise no will be ready to accept their mistake.

So according to arguments most preferable choice would be to opt multiple captains as it will help country to utilize their best captaincy talent in shorter formats. But a t20 captain could also handle a ODI team to some extent if he got extreme potential and experience. Many countries had adopted this policy of different captains which includes: India, Australia, South Africa and England. A player could get more confidence if he is tested at young age and could get better result time to time and will have more margin of improvement.

Pakistan is also recently facing captaincy crisis after azhar removal’s as captain and misbah retirement, Sarfraz is roped as captain of limited overs side but it would be a real test to decide the captain for test side as it is not easy to handle, only a person which natural leading capability could be charged for this.

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