The three pillars

A new year, and the new IPL season is not far away. Mumbai Indians today announced the 3 players they have decided to retain. There were plenty of options for the management to pore over and choose from, but here are the three they finally decided to retain.

Rohit Sharma

An integral part of the Mumbai Indians squad since 2011, he led the team to their maiden IPL title in 2013 and then again in 2015 & 2017. The Mumbai lad is the third highest run-scorer in IPL history, having scored 4,207 runs at an average of 32.61 & a strike rate of 130.89. In 2015 when the team started off with a string of bad results, Rohit Sharma kept calm and ensured a fight back in the second half of the season. He was adjudged as the Player of the Match in the 2015 final, scoring a crucial half century. A key player in the batting line-up and an important leader both on and off the pitch, the Hitman was always an obvious choice for the management, and he will be looking ahead to become only the second captain to have defended the IPL title successfully.

Hardik Pandya

He can hit it big, bowls quick and has a safe pair of hands on the field. A complete package, Hardik Pandya was the find of the IPL in 2015 for Mumbai Indians. His performances in the season led him to being fast-tracked into the national side. Since 2015, he has honed his skills and developed into a complete all-rounder. Last season, he was a key member of the squad with both bat and ball. He was an important member lower down the order and regularly ensured that the side would end the innings on a high. He holds the record for the most runs scored in an over in IPL-10, when he smashed 28 runs against Pune in the final over of the clash. A strong all-rounder is worth his weight in gold, and Mumbai Indians would certainly be happy to have retained Hardik as he continues to rise.

Jasprit Bumrah

Just like Hardik Pandya, Jasprit Bumrah is another player that has grown leaps and bounds in his time with Mumbai Indians. Having joined us in our maiden title winning season, Jasprit Bumrah became a regular fixture in the squad in 2014. An unconventional bowling action, ‘boom’ has turned into one of the most lethal bowlers in limited overs cricket. He holds the record having claimed the most T20I wickets (28) in a calendar year. His ability to bowl accurate yorkers at will makes him an easy choice in the death overs. Last season he played an important part in our third IPL title, as he picked up 20 wickets – the highest by a Mumbai Indians bowler. His performance in the super over against Gujarat Lions, conceding only 6 runs underlined his importance. The Ahmedabad born lad has turned into a key member of the squad and with experience under his belt, he will be expected to take on more responsibility in the upcoming IPL season.

All eyes will now be on the IPL auction. The Mumbai Indians will enter the auction with a purse of Rs. 47 crores and 2 RTM cards as they try to ensure a core of the last season’s title winning squad can be retained. It promises to be an intense auction and one of the most exciting ones in recent memory.

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