Coming into the first Test, Michael Clarke and Mahendra Singh Dhoni were sailing in very different boats.
Michael Clarke was the captain who could do no wrong. In 18 months as captain of Australia, he had almost single-handedly kept them afloat. In 22 matches as skipper, he has averaged 70.08 with nine centuries. He was an attacking skipper; one that many thought was the best in the world.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni, on the other hand, was feeling the effects of being in the job for too long. He was suddenly the man who could do no right. Team selection was bad, his tactics were too defensive, his handling of the team wasn’t good, there was discord and there was defeat.
One Test later – things have suddenly been flipped. Everyone who is anyone believes that Dhoni is the best thing to happen to Indian cricket all over again. The 224 was great, it was brilliant, and it was stunning. It was everything that you expect from a captain.
But Clarke wasn’t too bad either. His 130 in the first innings on a turner had put Australia in a strong position but he was ultimately let down by his team selection. He went with pace – widely thought to be Australia’s strength on a wicket that supported spin. It was a decision that left Australia staring at defeat very early in the match.
It’s still early days and we might see the equation change during the course of the four-Test series but on an individual basis who came out on top?
Watch Ayaz Memon and Ashish Magotra discuss captaincy and more in the video above.