4 reasons why bowlers don’t captain a cricket team

You might have thought and wondered why don’t bowlers captain a cricket team? or why teams usually don’t prefer bowlers as captain?


Yeah, we all know cricket is a batsman dominating game but is it unfair that national selectors or franchise don’t give priority to the bowling captain?


Today we will share plenty of reasons why batsman gets the ample opportunities to captain a side but bowlers aren’t considered much while appointing a skipper.


why bowlers don't captain
It’s not easy being a bowler



Reasons why selectors don’t prefer a bowling captain


1. Difficult to manage things on the field


Imagine you are the striker bowler of your team. You bowled a decent over, you are so busy thinking about executing your plans with the ball that you hardly get any time to think about the team, field positions, bowling changes etc.


Will it be beneficial for your team? Will you be able to focus completely on your own bowling? No, I believe.


Whereas for a batsman this is simple. If you bat at 3 you will simply come at number three after a fall down of a wicket. Captaincy will not come in between, whether you are a captain or not you will play at your batting position after a fall down of a wicket.


And while fielding you can completely focus on your plans, bowling changes, field placements which would be very difficult for a bowling captain.



2. Bowling captain may not use themselves properly


Being a bowling captain you have to decide how much you have to bowl and at what time. This causes you to over bowl or under bowl yourself, don’t bring yourself when you actually should be bowling. Rather you may go bowling at the wrong time.


So any team wouldn’t want a bowler to be thinking about anything other than his own bowling.


For instance, when Angelo Mathews was the captain of the Sri Lankan Cricket team he had almost left the bowling. Andrew Flintoff was a one change bowler but while captaining a side he used to ball with a new ball as well.


They have to manage themselves as well as the team. Using the proper resources at the correct time becomes really crucial or else this could let your team down.



3. Fitness, Injuries and workload


We all are quite aware how difficult for a fast bowler to keep himself fit always. They train hard, follow proper diets, run, run and run.


Bowlers like Mitchell Starc, Dale Steyn, Jaspreet Bumrah are the primary fast bowlers of their country but at the same time, they are prone to injury. So in case if they get injured frequently which most of the fast bowlers do, their team wouldn’t want the frequent change of the captain.


They may feel physically and mentally tired after managing so much of workload. So workload of their practice session and infield bowling would be a little demanding for them to captain their side at the same time.



4. Lesser Career Potential


Sachin Tendulkar, Sanath Jayasuriya has played international cricket for more than 20 years. Do you think is it practically possible for a fast bowler? Their body tears every day, every hour. Hence they do lose some pace in the latter part of their career as well.


It is quite obvious and anyone can understand that they can’t have a career for decades. So even if you give the captaincy to a fast bowler after 3 4 years or so you have to look for the new options again.


While class batsmen usually have greater career potential. Therefore, for choosing a captain, selectors put their bet on batsman more often than not.





There are many exceptions as well. Bowling captains like Kapil Dev, Imran Khan, Ian Botham, Daniel Vettori and Shaun Pollock had done a terrific job for their respective sides. But not to forget they were more of an all rounders.


Also, then there used to be only 2 formats (Test and ODI) but nowadays there are 3 formats (addition of T20 as well). So, it is very difficult for a bowler to play all the formats while being resistant to injuries.


Today, almost every team has a separate set of fast bowlers for each format. For instance Shami, Ishant, Umesh and Ashwin only play Tests for India. This further eliminates the possibility of a fast bowler being a captain of the side.


However, if we talk about the bowler captain in the IPL, Shane Warne brought his experience and captaincy skills to help Rajasthan Royals to win the first IPL title back in 2008.


Hope you liked the article. Let me know in the comment section what you think about this.


If you love sports and want every update about sports, you can follow me on Twitter and YouTube as well.


Do me a favour by sharing this 🙂

Ishan Lalwani

A software Engineer who is trying to connect people around the globe with the world of sports and different leagues all over the world. Stay Happy but never satisfied! Live, Love, Laugh, Life goes on!

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Michell Chaney

    Everything is very open with a really clear explanation of the challenges.
    It was really informative. Your site is very helpful. Thanks for sharing!

Leave a Reply