Cricket is more of a batsman's game. And as we have observed, the captains of teams are almost always the batters. Moreover, batsmen have held the position of captain the longest. However, a few bowlers have successfully guided their teams to victory. Fast bowlers have benefited from the captaincy role, and their performances have not suffered. Let us look at cricket captains who were bowlers.
1. Kapil Dev
Kapil Dev, India's World Cup-winning captain in 1983, will always be one of the country's finest cricketers. He was a batsman in the bottom middle order who could turn an inning around in a few overs. He was also one of the most spirited bowlers with the ball, capable of throwing extended stints. Before the 1983 World Cup, Kapil Dev initially led India on tour to the West Indies in 1982–1983. The triumph at the World Cup had a significant impact on India, sparking a revolution in cricket.
2. Imran Khan
The best cricketer Pakistan has ever produced is undoubtedly Imran Khan. a bowler who could give it his all on any surface and in any situation. He has almost two decades of experience playing for Pakistan, nearly a decade he spent as their captain.His leadership of Pakistan in 48 Tests (14 victories) and 139 ODIs (75 wins) makes him the nation's most successful one-day captain. He guided Pakistan to the World Cup triumph in 1992 after a dismal start to their tournament, winning five straight matches after only winning 1 of the first 5.
3. Wasim Akram
The finest left-arm bowler to ever set foot on a cricket field is arguably Wasim Akram. Before making his international debut, Akram had never played first-class cricket. He began his career as a pure fast bowler and only picked up additional skills as he participated in more matches. He was also a key player in Pakistan's 1992 World Cup victory, as he finished with 18 wickets, the most in the competition.
4. Shaun Pollock
One of the best all-around players to ever represent South Africa is he. Pollock was one of the few true all-rounders in world cricket who could be equally efficient with the bat and the ball, having scored more than 3500 runs in both formats and taking more than 800 international wickets. However, after Graeme Smith and Hansie Cronje, Pollock is the third-most successful South African captain, with 14 wins in 26 Tests and 59 wins in 92 ODIs.
5. Courtney Walsh
Former Jamaican cricketer Courtney Andrew Walsh OJ for the West Indies from 1984 to 2001, leading the team in 22 Test matches. His outstanding opening bowling tandem with fellow West Indian Curtly Ambrose for several years makes him one of the all-time great fast bowlers. Walsh took 519 and 227 wickets in 132 Tests and 205 One Day Internationals, respectively. In 49 games, he also managed to take 421 Test wickets. He was the first bowler in Test cricket to record 500 wickets.
6. Daniel Vettori
With 112 Test caps and 291 ODI caps, he is New Zealand's most-captured Test and ODI cricketer. He served as the country's captain from 2007 to 2011. Vettori, a bowling all-rounder, was the eighth player in the annals of Test cricket to amass 300 wickets and 3,000 runs.
7. Anil Kumble
Anil Kumble is a new exception in a country where batting captains have traditionally prevailed. For a brief period, India's top Test wicket-taker was given the captaincy in the most extended format, and he handled it gracefully. On November 8, 2007, Kumble was chosen to lead the Indian Test cricket squad. Rahul Dravid, a state colleague who quit as captain in September 2007, succeeded him. He is the only leg spinner on the team to hold the position of captain.
8. Shahid Afridi
Mohammad Yousuf was fired as Pakistan's ODI captain in 2010. Afridi became the captain in his place. Afridi also led Pakistan in Test matches, but he left the format after just one game. In the 2011 Cricket World Cup, Pakistan advanced to the semi-finals. This was under his leadership.
9. Heath Streak
Heath Streak, a lion-hearted fast bowler who could produce seam movement even on placid fields, is unquestionably one of the best bowlers to have represented Zimbabwe. He could bowl with superb control and a fast rate, and he frequently carried a meager bowling attack by himself. In 2000, Heath Streak was Zimbabwe's fourth Test and sixth One-Day captain, but he was also the first bowler from his nation to lead his team. After a 2-0 series victory over Bangladesh, he led the team admirably as he became the second Zimbabwean captain to defeat India in a Test match (he also claimed seven wickets).
10. Pat Cummins
Following Tim Paine's departure, Cummins was named the 47th captain of the Australian Test cricket team on November 26, 2021. Following the 2018 ball-tampering controversy, Steve Smith was appointed as his vice-captain, signaling Smith's return to a position of authority.