Someone once stated the Indian team is the most demanding job in the state after that of the Prime Minister. The continuous examination as well as the expectations that are unrealistic create a heady concoction, with the finest of the lot splitting beneath the tremendous pressure of a billion hopes. With no additional pressure of changing them, there happen to be some who’ve flourished in the role, scoring runs in spite of the weight. With his 122 against England in Pune, Kohli demonstrated captaincy has really helped him soar to new peaks with his red hot form motoring the Indian team.
5 Mohammad Azharuddin – 04
Before accusations of match-fixing spelt doom for his international career, Mohammad Azharuddin had created a name for himself with his silken leg side game and astute captaincy. He captained the Indian team in 47 Tests and 174 ODIs, leading them to 90 wins, the most by an Indian skipper before MS Dhoni broke the record in 2014.As a captain, Azharuddin scored more than 5000 runs, the most by an Indian skipper, second behind only Dhoni, having scored four centuries at an average of close to 40. His highest score of 153 was made during his captaincy days. Two of his centuries were against Pakistan, while one each was against Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe.
4 Virat Kohli – 05
With his scintillating 122 against England at Pune, Kohli has gone past Azharuddin’s tally of four centuries as captain. Kohli’s impact on world cricket can be best understood by the fact that Azhar scored his four centuries over 174 ODIs, whereas Kohli has gone past him in just 18 ODIs. Kohli’s highest score as a captain is the unbeaten 139 that he scored against Sri Lanka at Ranchi in 2014. Having just taken over as full-time captain, it won’t be long before Kohli shoots up this list. As a side note, Kohli averages 75 as a captain, compared to 53 as non-captain.
3 MS Dhoni – 06
The old warhorse who captained India for close to a decade, MS Dhoni scored the bulk of his centuries as captain. As a youngster in the team, he scored belligerent centuries like 148 against Pakistan and 183* against Sri Lanka, but changed his approach when he was entrusted with the captaincy of all three formats. As a captain, Dhoni went lower down the order, often allowing other players the time to get a look-in in the middle. He captained India in a total of 199 ODIs, scoring six centuries as skipper, with a best of 139* against Australia in 2013. He also averaged 53.92 as captain, three units higher than his non-captaincy figures.
2 Sachin Tendulkar – 06
The batting great didn’t enjoy the most enjoyable of times as captain, but did not let the additional burden deter him from scoring runs the way he did for the rest of his career. Although there was drop in his batting average, he scored some of his best innings as ODI captain, including the 186* which was the highest score by an Indian for quite some time, before Tendulkar himself revised it in 2010 with the first double hundred of the format.In 73 matches, he scored six centuries, compiling 2454 runs over a period that extended from 1996-2000, before the captaincy was given to a young Sourav Ganguly. Overall, he scored as many as 49 tons in a career that extended from 1989 to 2012..
1 Sourav Ganguly -11
The man who was instrumental in changing the face of Indian cricket at the turn of the millennium, Sourav Ganguly prowess as a limited-overs batsman was matched by few during his pomp. With a strong off side game and the ability to belt bowlers at will, Ganguly was a deadly batsman at the top of the order, as well as in the middle.He captained India in 147 ODIs, scoring half (11 in 22) of his centuries as a skipper. His highest score as captain was the 144 he scored against Zimbabwe in December, 2000 at Ahmedabad. His career as a captain extended from 2000-2005, before he was unceremoniously sacked by Greg Chappell during one of the most controversial eras of Indian cricket.