Steven Smith, Daniel Vettori and Mahela Jayawardene © AFP
Steven Smith, Daniel Vettori and Mahela Jayawardene © AFP

When we speak about captains in IPL, the top names that come to our mind are of Sachin Tendulkar, Gautam Gambhir, Sourav Ganguly, Virender Sehwag, MS Dhoni, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and likes. While overseas cricketers have led franchises, theirs are not the first names to cross our minds when we think of IPL captains.

Some of these men (Shane Warne, Adam Gilchrist, David Warner) have led their teams to IPL titles. Some are commentators and panelists in 2018 IPL (Kevin Pietersen, David Hussey). Some have been appointed IPL coaches (Daniel Vettori, Warne, Ricky Ponting). And there are those who are still playing in the league (Glenn Maxwell, Dwayne Bravo). Let’s have a look at the overseas cricketers who have at some point captained the IPL franchises from different countries:

AustraliaOutside India, IPL has had most captains from Australia (12). They have also been the most successful. In fact, other than Rohit, Dhoni and Gambhir, only Australian captains (Warne, Gilchrist, Warner) have won the IPL. Of Australians, Steven Smith has the best record as captain (win percentage 66.7 from 24 matches). Gilchrist has led in most IPL matches (74). Hopes, former Delhi Daredevils (DD) captain, is coaching them this season.

Player Teams Span M W L T NR Win %
Adam Gilchrist Deccan Chargers, Kings XI Punjab 2008-2013 74 35 39 0 0 47.3
Shane Warne Rajasthan Royals 2008-2011 55 30 24 1 0 55.4
David Warner Delhi Daredevils, Sunrisers Hyderabad 2013-2017 47 26 21 0 0 55.3
George Bailey Kings XI Punjab 2014-2015 30 14 16 0 0 46.7
Steven Smith Pune Warriors, Rajasthan Royals, Rising Pune Supergiant 2012-2017 24 16 8 0 0 66.7
Shane Watson Rajasthan Royals, Royal Challengers Bangalore 2008-2017 24 8 13 2 1 39.1
Glenn Maxwell Kings XI Punjab 2017-2017 14 7 7 0 0 50.0
David Hussey Kings XI Punjab 2012-2013 12 6 6 0 0 50.0
Aaron Finch Pune Warriors 2013-2013 10 2 8 0 0 20.0
Ricky Ponting Mumbai Indians 2013-2013 6 3 3 0 0 50.0
James Hopes Delhi Daredevils 2011-2011 3 0 2 0 1 0.0
Cameron White Deccan Chargers, Sunrisers Hyderabad 2011-2013 12 7 5 0 0 58.3

England: Pietersen is the only England cricketer to have captained in IPL. It was a forgettable affair: he led DD to a solitary win and 11 defeats, all in 2014 IPL.

Sri Lanka: The previous editions saw three Sri Lankans lead IPL franchises — Mahela Jayawardene, Kumar Sangakkara and Angelo Mathews. Jayawardene, currently Mumbai Indians (MI) head coach, holds a slight edge over Sangakkara when it comes to captaincy records.:

Player Teams Span M W L T NR Win %
Kumar Sangakkara Deccan Chargers, Kings XI Punjab, Sunrisers Hyderabad 2010-2013 47 15 30 2 0 34.0
Mahela Jayawardene Delhi Daredevils, Kings XI Punjab, Kochi Tuskers Kerala 2010-2013 30 10 19 1 0 35.0
Angelo Mathews Pune Warriors 2013-2013 5 1 4 0 0 20.0

New Zealand: New Zealand had three captains in IPL before this season — Brendon McCullum, Vettori and Ross Taylor. Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) had hit rock bottom before Anil Kumble and Vettori took over the mantle. Vettori continues to stay in thick of things as RCB coach. Meanwhile, Kane Williamson is the new addition to the list of captains in IPL from New Zealand. He is still undefeated as IPL captain (as was Taylor in his only match):

Player Teams Span M W L T NR Win %
Daniel Vettori Royal Challengers Bangalore 2011-2012 22 12 10 0 0 54.5
Brendon McCullum Gujarat Lions, Kolkata Knight Riders 2009-2016 14 3 10 1 0 25.0
Ross Taylor Pune Warriors 2013-2013 1 1 0 0 0 100.0
Kane Williamson Sunrisers Hyderabad 2018-2018 3 3 0 0 0 100.0

South Africa: From the current lot of South African cricketers (9) playing IPL, JP Duminy has captained in most IPL matches. However, Shaun Pollock holds a better win percentage. Pollock was appointed MI captain after Harbhajan Singh earned a ban in 2008.

Player Teams Span M W L T NR Win %
JP Duminy Delhi Daredevils 2015-2016 16 6 9 0 1 40.0
David Miller Kings XI Punjab 2016-2016 6 1 5 0 0 16.7
Shaun Pollock Mumbai Indians 2008-2008 4 3 1 0 0 75.0

West Indies: Darren Sammy, Dwayne Bravo and Kieron Pollard have all led IPL franchises, but none of them for an entire season. None of them had anything exceptional to write home about.

Player Teams Span M W L T NR Win %
Darren Sammy Sunrisers Hyderabad 2014-2014 4 2 2 0 0 50.0
Dwayne Bravo Mumbai Indians 2010-2010 1 0 1 0 0 0.0
Kieron Pollard Mumbai Indians 2014-2014 3 1 2 0 0 33.3

Pakistan, Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, Afghanistan, and Netherlands have all had representations in IPL, but none of their cricketers has led.