IPL 2022 – Analysing the Mumbai Indians ahead of the new season
Mumbai Indians, five-time champions, entered the mega auction with a balance of INR 48 crore from their allotted INR 90 crore. Four crucial players – Rohit Sharma (INR 16 crore), Jasprit Bumrah (INR 12 crore), Suryakumar Yadav (INR 8 crore), and Kieron Pollard (INR 6 crore) – were retained by the club before to the auction. Following that, the franchise acquired a total of 21 players at a two-day mega auction. The team will have a lineup of 25 players (17-Indian, eight overseas)
Mumbai Indians were not afraid to go all-in for Ishan Kishan at the auction, investing INR 15.25 crore on the destructive wicketkeeper-batter from the previous season. Mumbai also made some clever acquisitions, including all-rounder Tim David (INR 8.25 crore), South Africa’s rising star Dewald Brevis (INR 3 crore), left-arm seamer Jaydev Unadkat (INR 1.30 crore), leg-spinner Murugan Ashwin (INR 1.6 crore), and pacer Basil Thampi (INR 30 lakh).
The presence of a strong core
The success of the Mumbai Indians is due to their core group. The five-time winners will be hoping that veteran members of their squad such as Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Kieron Pollard, and Suryakumar Yadav have another outstanding season. The franchise will welcome outstanding performer Ishan Kishan and expect him to bat at the top of the order with skipper Rohit Sharma. Along with Pollard, who will shoulder additional responsibility following Hardik Pandya’s withdrawal from the squad, powerful hitters like Tim David and Dewald Brevis may give a solid finish.
Death Bowling concerns
The Mumbai Indians would sorely miss the services of express pacer Jofra Archer, who would not only have been an ideal partner for Bumrah in terms of sharing the new ball, but could also have plugged the run flow in the final overs. With Archer unavailable, skipper Rohit would consider alternative possibilities such as Tymal Mills, Riley Meredith, Basil Thampi, and Jaydev Unadkat. Even Jasprit Bumrah, with his wicket-taking prowess, has been known to have a bad day or two at the office in the past.
The club will also lose the services of leg-spinner Rahul Chahar, who, together with Boult and Bumrah, was one of the league’s most important bowlers. Murugan Ashwin and Mayank Markande will be tasked with the task of filling the squad’s spinner vacuum.
Big Impact Overseas Players could be the X-Factor
It would be interesting to observe how MI’s extremely laden batting order accommodates South Africa’s U19 World Cup standout Dewald Brevis. Similarly, Tim David, who is renowned for his devastating skills with the bat down the order, will be eager to showcase his abilities in the gala tournament. Fabian Allen, the West Indies’ all-rounder, may potentially be a like-for-like substitute for his national team skipper Pollard.
In terms of bowling, English bowler Tymal Mills might be a viable alternative to combine with Bumrah in the final overs, considering his deceptive slower balls and pinpoint yorkers. Similarly, Australian bowler Riley Meredith, who struggled with Punjab Kings last year, may be a viable option because to his wicket-taking abilities in the middle overs.
Injury Concerns will have to be Addressed in order to progress
Injury concerns might become a major source of concern for MI, as the organisation has been plagued by them in prior seasons. With Archer now out of action, the greatest issue is whether Mumbai skipper Rohit Sharma will be able to play the entire season, since he has been plagued by injuries in previous tournaments as well. If that occurs, the organisation will be without not just a strong batter, but also his captaincy abilities.
Overall, the serial winners of the IPL will have to dig deep this season, if they are to stand any chance of making it to the latter stages of the tournament. There are some teams who have really strengthened in this mega auction, making this quite possibly, one of the toughest outings for the 5-time champions.