Test Cricket: Fast bowlers haven’t always been thought of being Test captains in cricket. If we look more closely at the most successful leaders in the conventional structure, batters predominate the list statistically.
Over the years, only a small number of pacers—mostly all-rounders—have led their nation in Test cricket matches. It has been accomplished by Kapil Dev for the Indian cricket team and Imran Khan, Wasim Akram, and Waqar Younis for Pakistan.
Shaun Pollock led South Africa, while Bob Willis led England. Courtney Walsh and Jason Holder have alternated as the team captains for the West Indies cricket team, and Heath Streak has also captained Zimbabwe.
Young fast bowlers who aspire to represent their country in red-ball matches have reason to believe that Pat Cummins of Australia and Ben Stokes of England will one day lead their teams in Test cricket matches.
Test Cricket: Here are 3 Most Successful Fast-bowler Captain
1. Shaun Pollock
Shaun Pollock’s name is mentioned when the word “captaincy” is included, and the 2003 World Cup DRS error immediately comes to mind. Unfortunately, given the magnitude of the inaccuracy, it is likely to remain that way. However, it would also be unjust to deny Pollock credit for leading the Test team.
Following the match-fixing incident, Pollock succeeded Hansie Cronje as South Africa’s captain. In 26 Test cricket matches, the Proteas won 14 and lost only five. In his role as a leader, he defeated New Zealand, Sri Lanka, India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan ten times at home. His wins on the road included two in the West Indies, one apiece in Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe.
Shaun Pollock, the team’s captain, had a strong track record with the ball. In comparison to his overall average of 23.11, he took 103 wickets at a 21.36 average with four five-fers.
2. Imran Khan
The greatest fast-bowler captain in Test cricket history is without a doubt, Imran Khan. Between 1982 and 1992, he was the captain of Pakistan in 40 Test matches, during which time the team won 14 and lost only eight. This was an extraordinary record for the format at the time, when draws were the norm.
Under Imran’s leadership, Pakistan won nine Test cricket at home, as well as two in England and one each in the West Indies, India, and Sri Lanka. 187 of Imran’s 362 Test victories were while he was the team captain. With 12 five-wicket hauls, he averaged a remarkable 20.26, above his lifetime average of 22.81.
Even if we are talking about fast-bowling captains, it is important to note that Imran was a strong leader on the willow as well. He averaged 52.34 runs per game while scoring 2408. His career Test batting average was 37.69, which is significantly less.
The development of athletes like Akram and Waqar, who would later go on to become sports icons, was Imran’s greatest leadership achievement. I guess you could say Imran was a true leader.
3. Wasim Akram
Wasim Akram, a renowned former left-arm seamer and lower-order hitter, is currently making news for his book “Sultan,” in which he makes some shocking discoveries. Some of the occurrences should have happened while he was serving as captain.
In 25 Test cricket matches, Akram was the captain of Pakistan, who won 12 and lost 8. Seven of his Test victories as captain, including two each in England and India, one in Australia, New Zealand, and Bangladesh, were impressively achieved away from home.
In terms of his bowling stats as captain, he had three five-fors and 107 wickets at an average of 23.35, which is roughly in line with his 23.62 average in all of his Test matches.