Chennai Super Kings captain Mahinder Singh Dhoni is the first name on the list of players who played most IPL matches as captain. With as many as four Indian Premier League titles to his name in 13 seasons of the elite T20 league, MS Dhoni is synonymous with CSK and is the most prominent name of the tournament.
However, MS Dhoni isn’t the most successful captain in the Indian Premier League, a mantle that belongs to Mumbai Indians captain Rohit Sharma. There have also been other captains in IPL who have been successful in a short span of time.
But, who has been the longest-serving of them all? Let’s find out.
Top 10 players who played most IPL matches as captain
|Rank||Player||Nationality||Matches||Team(s)||Won||Lost||Win%||No of IPL Titles|
|1||MS Dhoni||India||204||Chennai Super KingsRising Pune Supergiant||121||82||59.6||4|
|2||Virat Kohli||India||140||Royal Challengers Bangalore||64||69||48.16||0|
|3||Gautam Gambhir||India||129||Delhi DaredevilsKolkata Knight Riders||71||57||55.42||2|
|4||Rohit Sharma||India||129||Mumbai Indians||75||50||59.68||5|
|5||Adam Gilchrist||Australia||74||Deccan ChargersKings XI Punjab||35||39||47.29||1|
|6||David Warner||Australia||69||Delhi DaredevilsSunrisers Hyderabad||35||32||52.17||1|
|7||Shane Warne||Australia||55||Rajasthan Royals||30||24||55.45||1|
|8||Virender Sehwag||India||53||Delhi DaredevilsKings XI Punjab||28||24||53.77||0|
|9||Sachin Tendulkar||India||51||Mumbai Indians||30||21||58.82||0|
|10||Rahul Dravid||India||48||Rajasthan RoyalsRoyal Challengers Bangalore||22||26||45.83||0|
MS Dhoni has played 204 matches as IPL captain
Being the captain from the very first season of IPL in 2008, MS Dhoni is automatically the player to have captained most matches in the Indian Premier League. In the process, the former India cricket team captain has taken CSK to the IPL playoffs 11 times and the final 9 times, of which he has won the title four times. He had stood down from the captaincy role ahead of IPL 2022, with fellow teammate Ravindra Jadeja assuming the role. However, after a poor start to the season, CSK had to hand over the captaincy role to Dhoni yet again. So far, Dhoni has captained 204 IPL matches and won 121 of them.
Gautam Gambhir has played 129 IPL matches as captain
Gautam Gambhir started his captaincy stint in IPL after changing ship from Delhi Daredevils – now Delhi Capitals – to Kolkata Knight Riders. The southpaw has also been the only skipper of KKR to win IPL titles. Apart from Gambhir, only Eoin Morgan has taken KKR to an IPL final in 2021 before losing to CSK. After a successful era with KKR, where Gambhir delivered them two IPL titles, he moved back to Delhi Daredevils as a captain for a brief period before Shreyas Iyer took over the proceedings. Gambhir captained 129 matches in IPL and won 71 of them.
Rohit Sharma has been captain for 129 IPL matches
The best captain in IPL in the Indian Premier League, Rohit Sharma has led Mumbai Indians to as many as five titles – a record. The explosive opener had started his IPL stint with Deccan Chargers as an all-rounder before MI took him under their wings and made him the captain in 2013. Rohit Sharma won his first IPL title in his first season as a captain, and there has been no looking back since. Rohit Sharma has won the IPL title in 2015, 2017, 2019 and 2020. Sharma has won 75 of his 129 matches as captain.
Adam Gilchrist has captained 74 IPL matches
Only the second overseas player to become captain of an IPL team after Shane Warne, Adam Gilchrist had seen quite the success at the start of his IPL career. Gilchrist started his IPL stint with Deccan Chargers and went on to win the title in only his second season. He followed that up with Kings XI Punjab, now Punjab Kings, although he could never replicate that success with any other IPL franchises. The Australian southpaw captained only 75 IPL matches and won 35 of them.
Virat Kohli played second-most IPL matches as captain
Virat Kohli is the only player on this list who has captained at least 100 IPL matches and has not won an IPL title. Taking over the captaincy role from Daniel Vettori in 2011, a young Kohli took his time to pave his way in IPL, where his individual accolades grew aplenty, but his team could never touch the coveted trophy. Under his leadership, RCB reached two IPL finals in 2011 and 2016 but lost on both occasions.
Shane Warne became the first captain to win IPL
The late Australian legend, Shane Warne, had stunned when he led an understrength Rajasthan Royals side to the IPL title in the first season. An overseas player utilising the Indian conditions this well was a treat to watch, and the franchise has since not won a single title. Warne captained 55 IPL matches for RR and could not replicate the title-winning season thereafter, but he has won 30 of those games with an impressive win percentage of 55.45. He is also the only captain to have delivered an IPL title captaining as few as 55 matches.
With an era of the Indian Premier League now coming to an end, the league has seen young and vibrant Indian youngsters taking up the captaincy role like Lucknow Super Giants captain KL Rahul, Delhi Capitals skipper Rishabh Pant, Rajasthan Royals captain Sanju Samson, KKR skipper Shreyas Iyer and more.
Who is the worst captain in IPL?
Former Royal Challengers Bangalore and Delhi Daredevils skipper Kevin Pietersen is the worst captain in IPL, as he enjoys a win percentage of 17.65%.
Who is the best captain in IPL?
Mumbai Indians skipper Rohit Sharma is the best captain in IPL, with five league titles to his name.
What is the IPL captaincy record?
Rohit Sharma leads the list of win percentages in the IPL captaincy record. Get the full IPL captaincy record above.