The strength and mental conditioning coach of the MS Dhoni-led India National Cricket Team, which won the 2011 ODI World Cup, Paddy Upton, has opined that the best player of the team very quickly gets appointed in cricket as the leader of the team.
Meanwhile, India is placed in the Group 2 of the T20 World Cup 2021 alongside Pakistan, New zealand and Afghanistan. The Men In Blue will commence their journey in the T20 World Cup with a battle against arch-rivals Pakistan on 24 October in Dubai.
“That’s a difficult question. The answer is very, very subjective. The most educated answer I can give you is that we are too quick in sports to choose the best player as a leader.
“It’s just like in business – we have for years made the mistake of taking their best salesman and making them the sales manager. And what you do is you often lose your best salesman and you get a very average sales manager,” Upton maintained.
The strength and mental conditioning coach opined that the best players of the team are often named captains. He elaborated:
“We are not very good at understanding what are the criteria upon which you choose a captain. Number one, so we don’t choose them very often for the right reason, we just choose them because they’re the best player or the player that most people like. And number two, because we don’t really know how to choose them, we don’t know how to improve their captaincy skills.“
Paddy Upton further added that in cricket, there is a Batting, Bowling and Fielding coach to help out players in their respective fields, but we don’t have a leadership coach that can help out the captain of the team. He stated:
“So, we have batting coaches to help batsmen get better and bowling coaches to get bowlers to get better, and fielding coaches to help fielders get better.
“But very seldom do we have a leadership coach to help leaders get better at leading and it’s a very big gap that still exists within not just international cricket, but generally in a lot of team sports is we still in the year 2021, don’t do a good job choosing our captains and we don’t do a good job at helping our captains to get a lot better, a lot quicker. That would be my answer,”