When Gautam Gambhir, the former captain of Delhi Daredevils announced that he was stepping down as the captain, to pave the way for rookie cricketer Shreyas Iyer, it came as a shock.
A decision taken after the team faced a series of defeats this season. But this is not the first time a captain has given up his captainship mid-season. For example, Rohit Sharma took over the reins mid-season of Mumbai Indians from Ricky Pointing or when RCB’s Daniel Vettori turned to Virat Kohli to helm it.
Even in football David Beckham many years ago gave up the England captaincy, and was reported to have said, “Our performance during this World Cup has not been enough to progress further and both myself and all the players regret that, and are hurt.” Yet, it must be said that it very rare for sports stars to step down and leave their hallowed halls of fame for newer talent.
Footballer Collin Abranches says, “Although I don’t know much about cricket, I feel it’s a very hard decision for a captain to step down after a string of defeats. Also, there must have been some amount of pressure from the management too. It’s very difficult to leave one’s captainancy as there are so many decisions to look forward to, discuss with the family etc.
When you lose there is a lot pressure to get results and qualify for the semi-finals. In the end, I think he must have taken a decision that would help his mind, and get the best out of his game. When it comes to sports, everyone is a captain. It’s just that you need a leader and Gautam Gambhir was one such leader. I think the stress and pressure gets to you.
The same thing happened with Sachin Tendulkar too. Both are softter, but on the other hand look at Dhoni, he is not broken easily. You will never see him getting worked up or shattered. Such decisions are also taken for more personal reasons.”