HomeIndian Premier League (IPL)Top 6 Youngest Captains in the IPL History

Top 6 Youngest Captains in the IPL History

Leading a team in one of the biggest T20 tournaments in the world is no mean feat. But leading the team at a young age is an even bigger feat.

The pressure to perform, make strategic decisions, and motivate seasoned players can be immense for a young captain. However, it also presents a unique opportunity to showcase talent and lead by example.

Despite the challenges, several young captains have risen to the occasion in the IPL, demonstrating maturity beyond their years and earning respect from teammates and fans alike.

In 2011, Virat Kohli became the youngest captain in the IPL at the age of 22 years, 4 months and 6 days. Check out the top five youngest captains in IPL history.

List of 6 Youngest Captains in the IPL History

1. Virat Kohli – 22 years, 4 months and 6 days

In 2011, RCB skipper Daniel Vettori suffered an injury, which paved the way for Kohli to become the skipper. Kohli, at the age of 22 years and 4 months, led RCB to a nine-wicket win in his first assignment as skipper and overall led the team in three matches that year until Vettori returned.

Kohli became the permanent captain of RCB in 2013, and served in the position until 2021. He captained RCB in 140 matches, winning 64 and having a win percentage of 48.16. Kohli led RCB to the final in 2016, and to the playoffs in 2015, 2020, 2021 and 2022.

2. Steve Smith – 22 years, 11 months and 9 days

Australia’s Steve Smith, in 2013, became the youngest foreign captain in the IPL. Smith’s IPL journey began in 2010 when he joined RCB as a replacement for Jesse Ryder, and then he spent the next two seasons with Kochi Tuskers Kerala. But it was not until 2013 when he became a permanent in the playing XI.

In 2013, Smith was bought by Pune Warriors at the auction. He went on to captain the team that same season, after regular skipper Sourav Ganguly benched himself. At that time, Smith’s age was 22 years, 11 months and 9 days.

He led the team in only one game that season, before becoming the full-time captain of Rising Pune Supergiant in 2017, whom he led to the final. Smith also captained Rajasthan Royals. Overall, the batsman led in 43 IPL matches and has a 59.52% win percentage.

3. Shreyas Iyer – 23 years, 3 months and 21 days

In 2018, Delhi Capitals named a 23-year-old Shreyas Iyer as their skipper after Gautam Gambhir stepped down from the role midway through the season. Iyer was at the helm of the team until 2021, when he suffered an injury and was ruled out of the entire season and subsequently lost his captaincy to Rishabh Pant.

In 2019, Iyer led Delhi to the playoffs for the first time in seven years, and in 2020, he led the team to their first-ever IPL final. In 2022, Iyer led the Kolkata Knight Riders in 14 matches, including six wins and eight losses. In all, as a captain he has won 27 off 55 matches and has a win percentage of 53.65.

4. Suresh Raina – 23 years, 3 months and 22 days

In 2010, Suresh Raina, aged 23 years, 3 months and 22 days, was named CSK’s standby captain after MS Dhoni was unavailable for a few games. That season, Raina led CSK in six matches, winning four and losing two.

In 2017, when CSK was not a part of the IPL, Raina captained the Gujarat Lions, and led them to the playoffs. Overall, Raina was the captain in 34 IPL matches and boasted of a winning percentage of 44.11%.

5. Rishabh Pant – 23 years, a half year and 6 days

An injury ruled out Shreyas Iyer of IPL 2021, which was when Rishabh Pant was named the team’ captain. At the time, the wicketkeeper batsman was 23 years, 6 months and 6 days old. Under Pant’s captaincy, Delhi made it to the playoffs before losing in the eliminator match. Pant has overall captained in 30 IPL games, winning 16.

The batsman is not playing IPL 2023 due to a car accident he met with earlier this year. In Pant’s absence, David Warner is leading the Delhi Capitals.

6. Shubman Gill – 24 years and 198 days

After displaying his exceptional batting skills in two successful seasons with the Gujarat Titans, the dynamic opener Shubman Gill was entrusted with the captaincy for the IPL 2024 season following the sudden departure of Hardik Pandya.

Gill’s captaincy debut came in the opening match of the season against none other than the Mumbai Indians led by Pandya himself. At just 24 years and 198 days old, Gill became one of youngest captains ever in IPL history, but could not take the team to the playoffs.

FAQs about Youngest Captains in the IPL

Q) Who is the youngest captain in IPL history?

A) Virat Kohli holds the record for being the youngest captain in IPL history. He took on the role at the age of 22 years, 4 months, and 6 days in 2011.

Q) Which player became the youngest foreign captain in the IPL?

A) Steve Smith became the youngest foreign captain in the IPL at the age of 22 years, 11 months, and 9 days in 2013.

Q) When did Suresh Raina captain the Gujarat Lions in the IPL?

A) Suresh Raina captained the Gujarat Lions in the IPL in 2017 when the Chennai Super Kings were not part of the tournament.

Q) Before KKR, which team did Shreyas Iyer lead?

A) Shreyas Iyer led Delhi Capitals as captain from 2018 until 2021, guiding them to their first-ever IPL final in 2020. He captained in 55 IPL matches, winning 27 of them, with a win percentage of 53.65%. In 2024, he led his new team KKR to a title.

Q) How many runs did Rishabh Pant score in IPL 2024?

A) Rishabh Pant, who made his return to cricket after more than a year, was the leading run-getter for Delhi in IPL 2024, scoring 446 runs in 13 innings at an average of 40.54 and a strike rate of 155.40.



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