Punjab Kings, formerly known as Kings XI Punjab, was another team bought by a Bollywood celebrity. They are one of the few teams to have never won the Indian Premier League. However, the IPL 2022 mega auction was good for them and they have made a good side. In addition, they also announced their captain for IPL 2022. The Punjab Kings captain for the upcoming season will be Mayank Agarwal. The opener was retained by the franchise and will now lead the side which was earlier captained by his good friend KL Rahul.
A Brief History
Preity Zinta’s name and a strong local base gave the Punjab franchise popularity in the early years. At the time of Indian Premier League’s inception, franchises had a choice to pick an ‘Icon Player’ and Punjab Kings had no hesitation in choosing India’s 2007 T20 World Cup hero, Yuvraj Singh.
Punjab Kings are one of the three franchises to have never won an IPL title and one of the biggest reasons could be the constant change in their personnel. There have been 13 players in 14 years to have led Punjab Kings. Here we take a look at all the Punjab Kings captains.
Yuvraj Singh (2008-2009)
Chosen as the ‘Icon Player’, Yuvraj Singh was appointed as the skipper for the inaugural edition of the IPL. India’s WC hero led the Punjab Kings side brilliantly in the first season.
Punjab Kings finished second in the league stage of IPL 2008 with 10 wins but eventually lost to Chennai Super Kings in the semifinals. The following year, Yuvraj’s Punjab Kings missed out on the top 4 position by a narrow margin. After which he was removed from the captaincy.
Punjab Kings played 29 matches under Yuvraj, winning 17 and losing 12 games. As a player, Yuvi didn’t have much success for the Kings, scoring 955 runs while averaging 22.3 with a low strike rate of 127.9.
Kumar Sangakkara (2010)
Sri Lankan batting maestro was picked by Punjab Kings in the inaugural edition for USD 700000. Kumar Sangakkara was handed over the reins after Yuvraj Singh was removed from the captaincy ahead of IPL 2010.
However, the change in captaincy didn’t bring much luck as Punjab Kings succumbed to their worst season of the first three to finish last. After which, the Kings parted ways with him.
Sangakkara led the Punjab side in 13 matches, registering 4 wins and 9 defeats. He did a fantastic job as a player for PBKS, scoring over 1000 runs averaging 31.5 with a strike rate of 129.5.
Mahela Jayawardene (2010)
Another Sri Lanka legend, Mahela Jayawardene was one of the earliest picks in the 2008 auction, bought by Punjab Kings for USD 475000. He remained part of the franchise for the first three seasons.
Jayawardene had terrific numbers for PBKS, scoring 837 runs averaging 36.4 at an outstanding strike rate of 140.9. He captained a solitary game for the Kings in the absence of regular skipper Sangakkara in 2010, resulting in a loss.
Adam Gilchrist (2011-2013)
Australian revolutionary wicket-keeper legend Adam Gilchrist was brought into the Punjab side in IPL 2011 for a sum of USD 900000. He was the first player PBKS picked in the auction, mainly for his leadership skills as he had led the Hyderabad team to an IPL title.
Gilchrist couldn’t repeat that feat as Punjab Kings missed out on a playoff spot by a narrow margin in 2011 and finished sixth in the following two seasons. He led PBKS in 34 matches, splitting the wins and losses at 17 each.
Gilchrist scored 849 runs for Punjab, averaging 27.8 at a strike rate of 127.3. The legend retired at Punjab Kings at the end of IPL 2013.
David Hussey (2012-2013)
One of the most sought after T20 players in the world at that time, David Hussey was bought by Punjab Kings for a sum of USD 1.4 million. Having a huge experience of captaincy, Hussey was handed over the role after five matches in IPL 2012 in the absence of Adam Gilchrist.
Punjab Kings finished in sixth position in the 2012 edition with eight wins and eight losses. Hussey led the Punjab side in 12 matches, winning six and as many defeats.
George Bailey (2014-2015)
In a complete revamp ahead of the 2014 edition, Punjab Kings had brought in the likes of Mitchell Johnson, Glenn Maxwell, Virender Sehwag and George Bailey. Bailey was picked for Rs. 3.25 crores and was appointed as the skipper.
Punjab Kings saw tremendous success in the first year under Bailey’s leadership as they went on to top the league stage with 11 wins. The Kings made it to their first ever IPL final, a feat they haven’t been able to repeat since. Eventually they lost to Kolkata Knight Riders in the final. PBKS had a contrasting season in the following year, where they finished at the bottom of the table in IPL 2015.
George Bailey captained PBKS in 35 matches, registering 18 wins and 17 losses. As a player, he scored 581 runs for PBKS across two seasons at an average and strike rate of 25.3 and 133, respectively.
Virender Sehwag (2015)
India’s destructive opener in his twilight years, was brought into the Punjab Kings side in 2014 for a price of Rs. 3.2 crores. Sehwag was part of PBKS for two years and had a terrific season in 2014, scoring 561 runs.
Sehwag led the PBKS team in a solitary match in IPL 2015 against Rajasthan Royals. Punjab Kings came out on the winning side in a super over.
David Miller (2016)
The South African power-hitter was brought into the Punjab side as a replacement for Dimitri Mascarenhas during IPL 2011 and was retained ahead of the 2012 edition. The Killer Miller has played many match-winning knocks for PBKS and was their longest serving player.
Miller was appointed as the skipper for the 2016 edition but was axed halfway into the tournament after a string of losses and for his poor personal form. He led PBKS in six games, out of which five resulted in losses.
As a batsman, Miller scored 1971 runs for Punjab Kings at a very good average and strike rate of 35.2 and 139.2, respectively. Miller’s association with the Punjab franchise came to an end after 2019.
Murali Vijay (2016)
Punjab Kings brought in Murali Vijay in the 2015 auction for a sum of Rs. 3 crores. After the sacking of David Miller, Vijay took over as the PBKS skipper in IPL 2016. The change in captaincy didn’t bring any luck for them as they finished at the bottom of the table with only four wins. Murali Vijay led the side in eight matches, winning three and losing five.
Glenn Maxwell (2017)
The Australian all-rounder has been an enigma as far as IPL is concerned. Maxwell was picked by Punjab Kings for Rs. 6 crores in the 2014 auction. Doing justice to his price, he set the stage on fire with 641 runs at an average of 30.5 and phenomenal strike rate of 180. But since then he’s had an awful record in the IPL.
Maxwell was appointed as the skipper for the 2017 edition. Punjab Kings finished fifth in the season with seven wins and seven losses under his leadership.
Ravichandran Ashwin (2018-2019)
In yet another squad overhaul, Punjab Kings brought in the likes of KL Rahul, Chris Gayle, Yuvraj Singh, Aaron Finch and Ravichandran Ashwin in the 2018 mega auction. The off-spinner fetched a massive price of Rs. 7.2 crores. Known for having a brilliant cricket mind, Ashwin was handed over the captaincy in 2018.
Ashwin had promised to be innovative with his tactics ahead of the season and he did pull off some funky moves. However, Punjab’s bad run continued as they finished seventh in 2018 and sixth in 2019. Ashwin, who picked 25 wickets for PBKS in two seasons at an economy of 7.67, was traded to Delhi Capitals after 2019.
KL Rahul (2020-2021)
The promising batsman was picked by Punjab Kings in the 2018 mega auction for a whopping sum of Rs. 11 crores. KL Rahul lit up the IPL with his extraordinary with the bat and earned the captaincy ahead of the 2020 edition.
Rahul could not change the fortunes of PBKS as they missed out on the playoffs in another season, finishing sixth. They were reeling at the sixth position in IPL 2021 too, before the season was postponed.
KL Rahul has captained PBKS in 21 matches, winning 9 and losing 12. Rahul has been a prolific run-getter for PBKS, scoring 2251 runs at an exceptional average of 56.3 and a strike rate of 139.4.
Mayank Agarwal (2021-Present)
KL Rahul’s Karnataka teammate, Mayank Agarwal was brought into the Punjab side in 2018 for Rs. 1 crores. Since then he has been an integral part of Punjab Kings.
Agarwal has complimented Rahul at the top of the order extremely well, especially in the last two seasons. Rahul suffered an injury halfway into the 2021 season and Agarwal got an opportunity to lead the side in a solitary match before the tournament was postponed. A match PBKS lost despite Agarwal’s spectacular knock of 99 off 58 balls.