With stand-in captain KL Rahul ruled out from the five-match T20 series against South Africa starting in New Delhi from today, young wicketkeeper-batter Rishabh Pant will be leading India.
With this elevation, Pant will go past former skippers Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni when he dons the captaincy hat against the Proteas. Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Delhi Capitals’ captain will become the second-youngest Indian skipper in T20Is.
At 23 years and 197 days, former southpaw Suresh Raina still holds the record of being India’s youngest T20I captain. Pant will start his captaincy career on the second spot as he is 24-year-old and was born in October 1997.
Following Raina and Pant will be Dhoni, who was 26 years old when he was appointed skipper of India at the 2007 T20 World Cup. Virender Sehwag, India’s first-ever T20I skipper, was 28 when India took on South Africa in 2006. Virat was also 28 when he first led India in T20Is.
Interestingly, the former skipper led India in his maiden ODI in 2013 and in Test in 2014. But his first match as a T20I captain came in January 2017 against England. Veteran Ajinkya Rahane, who captained India on the Zimbabwe tour in 2015, was 28 then.