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Captain cool puts his predecessors in the shade

HT takes a look at how various Indian captains stack up against Dhoni in their first 10 Tests. See Graphics

cricket Updated: Dec 08, 2009 01:10 IST

When you talk about captaincy and the Indian team, many names spring to mind. Tiger Pataudi is widely held to be the

most cerebral leader of men in India's cricket history. Sunil Gavaskar ensured that India's pride was not dented as it had been in the past. Sourav Ganguly worked hard to be a players' captain.

It's far too early yet to judge Mahendra Singh Dhoni as a Test captain, but some patterns are too strong to ignore. His stocks among fans have been on the rise ever since he took over the leadership of the ODI team. Now, with the team growing from strength to strength in Test cricket, even the purists are being forced to examine Dhoni the Test player. The bottom line is that it was he who took India to the top spot in the rankings. It's also undeniable that he has had the best start to leading India of all men charged with the job.

Often, in cricket, bare statistics do not tell the story. But in this case, sometimes, in cricket, the numbers are self explanatory.