Former India cricketer and now a TV commentator, Ravi Shastri, has termed Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Kapil Dev, Ajit Wadekar and Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi as three best captains the Indian cricket team has ever had. Surprisingly, his list didn’t feature Sourav Ganguly or Mohammaed Azharuddin.
In an interview to Wisden India, Shastri said, “the reason I say he(Dhoni) has nothing to prove is that he is easily India’s most successful captain, by a distance. There is no one even close to him in that regard. The names that follow in that list a fair distance behind are Kapil Dev, who led India to the World Cup title in 1983 and because of whom we won the Test series in England in 1986. And Ajit (Wadekar) in an era before there was one-day cricket, when we won successive Test series in the West Indies and then England in 1971. And of course, Tiger (Pataudi) for flamboyance. Baaki koi nahi (there is no one else).”
So you know, Dhoni led India in 199 One Day Internationals with 110 wins and 74 defeats. Four matches were ties and 11 had no results. His success percentage was 59.57.
As for Ganguly, He led India in 147 ODIs, won 76 matches had 66 defeats while five had no results. His win percentage was 53.52.
The former India cricketer excluding Ganguly’s name from the list of most successful captains assumes significance in light of his bitter feud with the former while applying for the job of the Indian team’s head coach.
The BCCI had appointed Anil Kumble as the chief coach prompting Shastri to allege that one of the Committee members, Ganguly, was not present when his interview for the job was being conducted.
Shastri had termed Ganguly’s absence “disrespectful” to which the left-hand batsman retorted saying that the Mumbaikar was “living in fool’s world”.
“If Ravi was so serious about the job, he should have been in Kolkata for interview rather than appearing through Skype while holidaying in Bangkok,” Ganguly had said.