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From 2008 to 2024: List of captains to win Indian Premier League (IPL)

Published at :May 26, 2024 at 10:35 PM
Modified at :May 26, 2024 at 10:35 PM
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Karan Rawat


Rohit Sharma and MS Dhoni have won the joint-most IPL titles as captains.

A captain plays the most important role in the success of a team and is also the first one to be questioned when the side fails to deliver on expectations. With captaincy, comes huge pressure and responsibility, especially when leading a side in a high-profile tournament such as the Indian Premier League (IPL).

It is one of the toughest tasks in cricket to captain an IPL team because you have players from different countries playing together.

Over the years, many players led a team in the IPL, but only a few achieved success. Leading a team into the playoffs is challenging when ten teams are competing. Some captains, though, have made a habit of achieving success in the IPL even with the changing times in T20 cricket.

In this article, we will list the captains who have won the IPL title since 2008.

From 2008 to 2024: List of captains to win the Indian Premier League (IPL)

1. 2008 – Shane Warne (Rajasthan Royals)

Shane Warne
Shane Warne. (Image source: IPL)

A total of eight teams took part in the inaugural season of the IPL in 2008, and seven of those teams were led by Indian captains. Shane Warne was the only overseas cricketer who was leading a team in IPL 2008. It was because Rajasthan Royals (RR) didn’t have a big Indian name at that time in their squad.

Warne was both the captain and coach of the team. He made history by leading his squad with lesser-known names to lift the title and becoming the first captain to win the IPL trophy.

2. 2009 – Adam Gilchrist (Deccan Chargers)

Deccan Chargers 2009
Deccan Chargers (Image-Twitter)

Deccan Chargers won the second edition of the IPL in 2009. That win came under the leadership of Adam Gilchrist. He led his team in the final, where they beat Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB) to win their maiden title. Adam Gilchrist also won the Player of the Tournament award that season.

3. 2010 – MS Dhoni (Chennai Super Kings)

MS Dhoni, IPL trophy, 2010
MS Dhoni. Image-Twitter

It took three seasons for an Indian captain to win the IPL title, and it was none other than MS Dhoni, who led Chennai Super Kings (CSK) to their first trophy in 2010. Under Dhoni, CSK finished third with seven wins and seven defeats in the league stage. They beat Deccan Chargers in the semi-final and thumped Mumbai Indians in the final to win the title.

4. 2011 – MS Dhoni (Chennai Super Kings)

Chennai Super Kings won their second title in 2011, and MS Dhoni became the first captain to successfully defend the IPL crown. CSK won nine games in the group stage and then went on to win Qualifier 1 and the final, both against RCB.

5. 2012 – Gautam Gambhir (Kolkata Knight Riders)

In 2012, Gautam Gambhir and KKR stopped CSK from winning a third consecutive IPL trophy. Gambhir became only the second Indian captain to lift the IPL trophy.

KKR had a great run that season, where they were at top of the group stage before beating Delhi Daredevils in Qualifier 1. In the final, Chennai Super Kings were in front of them, and it was the first final for KKR. Gambhir’s side made a remarkable chase to beat CSK by five wickets at Chepauk. Sunil Narine won the Man of the Tournament award.

6. 2013 – Rohit Sharma (Mumbai Indians)

Rohit Sharma, IPL trophy, IPL 2013
Rohit Sharma. Image-Twitter

After Sachin Tendulkar, Harbhajan Singh, and Ricky Ponting, it was Rohit Sharma who got the chance to lead Mumbai Indians (MI) in the IPL, and he made the biggest impact in his debut season as MI captain.

Rohit was given the captaincy mid-season in IPL 2013 as Ponting decided to step down. Through his inspirational leadership, Sharma took MI to their maiden title and had a breakthrough season as a captain. MI defeated Dhoni’s Chennai Super Kings in the final to clinch their first IPL trophy.

7. 2014 – Gautam Gambhir (Kolkata Knight Riders)

Gautam Gambhir, KKR, IPL 2024, Indian Premier League, Indian Premier League 2024, Kolkata Knight Riders,
Gautam Gambhir. (Image source: Twitter)

Under Gautam Gambhir, KKR qualified for six playoffs, and it was a golden period for the team when he was the captain. His on-the-face attitude made him an admirable leader, which was also evident in his performances.

After winning the first title in 2012, Gambhir led KKR to their second title in 2014. KKR beat Kings XI Punjab (now Punjab Kings) in the finals to win the title that year.

8. 2015 – Rohit Sharma (Mumbai Indians)

Rohit Sharma took MI to their second IPL title in his third season as the captain. In 2015, MI had a brilliant turnaround in the competition. MI started the season with four consecutive defeats and had only one win in the first six matches. But they peaked at the right time and won seven out of their last eight games to finish in the top two. They beat CSK in Qualifier 1 and also in the final.

9. 2016 – David Warner (Sunrisers Hyderabad)

David Warner, SRH
David Warner. Image-PTI

David Warner became the third Australian captain to lead a franchise to an IPL win when he led Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) to glory in 2016. Warner was equally good in that season with the bat, scoring 848 runs with nine half-centuries. Despite two defeats to start the tournament, Warner led SRH to win the final, where they defeated RCB. Interestingly, they won all three knockout matches (Eliminator, Qualifier 2 and Final) in the playoffs that season, which no other team has managed to so so far.

10. 2017 – Rohit Sharma (Mumbai Indians)

The 2017 season saw Rohit Sharma win the title for the third time as MI captain. Despite losing Qualifier 1 against Rising Pune Supergiants, MI qualified for the final after winning against KKR in Qualifier 2. In the final, they took their revenge and beat RPSG to seal their third title.

11. 2018 – MS Dhoni (Chennai Super Kings)

MS Dhoni, 2018 IPL
MS Dhoni. Image-IPL

CSK and Rajasthan Royals were suspended for two seasons (2016 and 2017). These two teams made their comebacks in 2018. MS Dhoni, who was back as CSK’s captain, propelled CSK to their third title.

CSK met Sunrisers Hyderabad in Qualifier 1 and the final, and they beat them both times to win the title. It was an emotional moment for the team and fans because their team was suspended for the previous two seasons.

12. 2019 – Rohit Sharma (Mumbai Indians)

Mumbai Indians won their first four trophies in odd years. They won the trophy in 2013, 2015, and 2017, and then won in 2019 as well to make it four in total. Their start to the tournament was not good as they lost two out of the first three games but then they gained momentum and went on to win the final. They beat CSK by only one run to win the final. It was the third time that Rohit Sharma and MI had defeated Dhoni and CSK in an IPL final.

13. 2020 – Rohit Sharma (Mumbai Indians)

Rohit Sharma, Mumbai Indians, IPL 2020
Rohit Sharma. Image-Twitter

In IPL 2020, Rohit Sharma successfully defended the title and became the first-ever captain to lead a franchise to five titles. They were dominating throughout the tournament. In the playoffs, they were simply untouchable. MI beat Delhi Capitals in Qualifier 1 and the final to win their fifth title under Rohit.

14. 2021 – MS Dhoni (Chennai Super Kings)

Under MS Dhoni’s captaincy, CSK won their fourth title in 2021. CSK entered the playoffs with three consecutive defeats. But they stepped up when it mattered the most. MSD and his men beat Delhi Capitals in Qualifier 1 and won the final by beating KKR. This was the fourth time CSK won the IPL title under MS Dhoni, and he added yet another trophy to his cabinet.

15. 2022 – Hardik Pandya (Gujarat Titans)

Hardik Pandya, IPL 2022
Hardik Pandya. Image-BCCI

The IPL 2022 saw two new teams join the competition, and a mega auction shuffled every team. Hardik Pandya joined Gujarat Titans (GT) after being released by MI and became their captain. He, along with Ashish Nehra (coach), had a memorable season, as the pair went on to lead GT to the title. Hardik became only the second captain after Shane Warne to lift the title in a team’s debut season.

16. 2023 – MS Dhoni (Chennai Super Kings)

MS Dhoni handed CSK captaincy to Ravindra Jadeja in 2022, and there were speculations that he would retire after the conclusion of the tournament. But it didn’t go well for the team as Dhoni had to return as captain mid-way in the tournament. However, CSK ended their campaign at ninth position in the points table that season.

They bounced back well in the very next season in 2023 when they won their record-equalling fifth IPL title under MS Dhoni’s captaincy.

17. 2024 – Shreyas Iyer (Kolkata Knight Riders)

Shreyas Iyer KKR IPL 2024
Shreyas Iyer. (Image Source: BCCI)

Shreyas Iyer became the fifth Indian batter to lead a franchise to an IPL title. He led Kolkata Knight Riders to their third IPL title in 2024. KKR beat Sunrisers Hyderabad in the final of the IPL 2024 to script history. Iyer had a brilliant season, and he led the team from the front. After Gautam Gambhir, Iyer became only the second captain to lead KKR to the championship.

(All stats updated till 25th May, 2024)

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