MS Dhoni and Rohit Sharma, on Saturday, were declared as the joint best IPL captains of all time by a Star Sports panel that comprised 50 members, including experts and former cricketers. Meanwhile, RCB captain Virat Kohli was named the greatest Indian batsman in the history of the IPL.
April 18 marked the thirteenth anniversary of the Indian Premier League (IPL), the most successful franchise competition in the history of cricket, and to mark the anniversary, Star Sports decided to separate the best from the rest. On the ‘Cricket Connected’ show, Star assembled a jury of 50 members, that included former cricketers (20), senior sports journalists (10), statisticians & analysts (10), broadcasters (7) and anchors (3) and analysts, and all fifty members of the panel decided to pick who they thought were some of the greatest performers in the history of the competition.
While almost every single decision was unanimous, interestingly, the battle for the best captain went down the wire, with Chennai Super Kings’ MS Dhoni going toe-to-toe with Mumbai Indians’ Rohit Sharma. While Dhoni-led CSK to three titles, including leading them to the playoffs in every single season, Rohit, on the other hand, led Mumbai to four IPL titles, cementing himself as the most successful captain in the IPL history. Thus, with little left to choose between the duo, the panel decided to split the decision and name both Rohit and Dhoni as joint best IPL captains of all time.
The show also featured a bunch of other top awards. Royal Challengers Bangalore captain Virat Kohli, who with 5,412 runs to his name is the highest run-getter of all time in IPL, was named the greatest Indian batsman in the competition, while his teammate AB de Villiers walked away with the ‘GOAT Batsman’ award, for his unbelievable exploits in the competition.
Lasith Malinga, who with 170 wickets is the highest wicket-taker in the competition, was named the ‘GOAT bowler”, while Australia’s Shane Watson was named the ‘GOAT all-rounder’ for his strong performances with both bat and ball for multiple franchises in the tournament history, most notably for Rajasthan Royals. CSK coach Stephen Fleming, meanwhile, was also named the best coach in the competition’s history.