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Captain’s job starts even before the beginning of the game as the leader has to finalise the playing XI for the match. It is the first and very important part of the game, and captain’s faith plays a crucial role in this segment.
Though the successful skippers generally like to retain their strong playing XI, sometimes the situations and conditions force to change the playing XIs.
However, there are some captains, who generally like to change the playing XIs in almost every game. We generally experience this kind of habit, using different playing XIs, when the skipper always tries to find out a strong team.
Here we are talking about the top five Test captains (at least captained in 50 Tests) who have tried out with the highest percentage of different playing XIs.
(Notes: Stats collected from ESPNcricinfo; updated till 4th June 2020)
Hansie Cronje (South Africa): Different playing XIs – 86.79%
Former South African captain Hansie Cronje, who had a controversial chapter at the end of his career, was one of the Test captains who loved the experiment in the game. As a skipper, Cronje handled 34 different Test players (excluding himself), including 19 Test debutants.
From 1994 to 2000, Cronje led the Proteas side in 53 Tests, out of which, he fielded different playing XIs in 46 matches. As a leader, his Test success rate was 50.34% (won 27 games out of 53 Tests).