Mumbai Indians IPL 2013 preview April 2, 2013

Big spenders still searching for returns

41

Big Picture

If willingness to put millions behind desire was a guarantee of success, Mumbai Indians should have been IPL winners multiple times by now. Year after year, auction after auction, they have poured in the big bucks and signed the biggest names, but the prize has always eluded them. The IPL is only five seasons old, and there are more franchises that haven't won it than those that have, but the tag of free-spending underachievers has belonged to Mumbai. Three successive seasons of making the IPL knockouts and a Champions League title haven't quite been able to shake off that label. That's the price you pay for assembling so many overseas and Indian stars.

This season is no different. John Wright and Anil Kumble are the latest additions to the Mumbai management. Ricky Ponting is the newest captain. These are not merely big names. These are institutions, men whose achievements will resonate for generations to come. They have probably the biggest crowd-puller the game has ever seen, Sachin Tendulkar, whose presence guarantees sellouts at Wankhede Stadium weeks before the season begins. There is Kieron Pollard, to whom Twenty20 comes as naturally as cricket did to Garry Sobers.

Why is such a collection of superstars still without an IPL title? It is as much a reflection on the fickleness of the format as on Mumbai's inability to handle the pressure in knockout clashes. It is difficult to imagine a similar line-up going without success for so long in Tests or ODIs, although South Africa will readily dispute that when it comes to world tournaments.

For what it's worth, the South African flavour of the squad last season has given way to one that is overwhelmingly Australian, with four of the five buys in the 2013 auction coming from Ponting's country, including the million-dollar Glenn Maxwell. The Indian contingent, especially the first-choice players, is perhaps the strongest in the IPL.

When you have so much to play with, you are prone to tinker too much too soon if the results don't come - Mumbai tried 24 players, the most, last season and as many as eight opening combinations. Stability is one thing Ponting will have to strive for. The results could follow. Or then again, the knockouts could prove to be the stumbling point. Regardless, the Wankhede stands will be packed and shrieking.

Key Players

Mumbai were the only bidders for Ricky Ponting in the auction. They bought him at base price and made him captain. This was probably the only way for Ponting to return to the IPL. Most other franchises have settled leadership. Ponting is making the most of what is left of his playing days following the end of a great international career in December. After the IPL, he will play in England and the West Indies. No love is lost between the former Australia captain and Indian fans, and now he is leading a franchise which has Tendulkar, Harbhajan Singh and Kumble.

Ponting's record suggests he isn't a bad Twenty20 batsman at all. He has been in fine nick; more than 900 runs in the Sheffield Shield and a decent run in the Big Bash. He was one of the longest-serving captains in international cricket, and has an overflowing trophy cabinet to back his credentials. On the face of it, it seems to be a bargain buy for a splurging franchise that has had to do with reluctant and hot-headed captains in the past.

Pollard was Mumbai's second highest wicket-taker last season, behind Lasith Malinga. Harbhajan had six wickets from 17 matches; RP Singh 10 from 11 at nearly eight runs an over. Barring Munaf Patel to an extent, there was little strike support for Malinga from the other frontline bowlers. Malinga has only four overs in a T20 game, and the others will have to do better than their 2012 showing.

Davy Jacobs, James Franklin, R Sathish, Aiden Blizzard, T Suman, Richard Levi, Herschelle Gibbs, Dwayne Smith … that is not some random wishlist for a Mumbai Indians XI, but the list of opening partners for Sachin Tendulkar over the previous two seasons. Only the pairing with Smith had some success. Phillip Hughes is the newest contender to open with Tendulkar, whose T20 strike-rate has also suffered along with his overall decline. Unless Tendulkar can script yet another revival in his batting, the onus will be on his partner to provide firepower at the top. Who will it be, or rather, how many more combinations will we see?

Big players in

Undoubtedly Ponting, although paying a million dollars for Maxwell also makes him a big signing. However, with Ponting, Pollard and Malinga likely to take three of the four overseas players' slots, it is to be seen how many games Maxwell gets. Many have pointed to his lacklustre debut Test series in India to scoff at the price Mumbai paid for him, but if reverse logic was to be applied, Pollard should have been hailed as a potential Test great by now.

Big players out

Thisara Perera, the hard-hitting Sri Lanka allrounder, was released by the franchise and bought by Sunrisers Hyderabad for $675,000 in the 2013 auction.

Under the radar

First-class batting and bowling averages of 42.03 and 25.47 suggest that Rishi Dhawan, the 23-year old from Himachal Pradesh, has the makings of a genuine allrounder. Another allrounder, Madhya Pradesh's Jalaj Saxena has been around for a while, and his batting has prospered in recent times, although the same cannot be said about his offbreaks.

Availability

If, and that is a big if, Franklin is picked in New Zealand's Test squad to tour England, he could end up missing a substantial chunk of the tournament in May.

Abhishek Purohit is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • on April 3, 2013, 7:02 GMT

    It is not about captaincy or Talent. The opening combination is crucial. Mumbai has rarely made use of the first 6 PP overs. They most often end up with a score of around 55-65 in the first 10...Then accelerate slowly to reach 100-110 by 16 and then go for somesenseless hitting and finally ending up with 130-140. The first thing Mumbai need is a dashing start, even if they lose a couple of wickets, 85/2 or 90/2 at the end of 10 overs is way better than 55/0 or 60/0. They have a strong line up with, ponting, rohit, karthik, Raydu in the middle nd Pollard to give the finishing touches. Sachin nd Smith to open and Raydu at No.3 would be perfect, followed by Ponting, Rohit, Karthik, Pollard (depending on Situation), Harbhajan, Malinga, Munaf, Ojha/Kulkarni, should be the best line-up Mumbai has based on the players I have seen...or they may even try opening with Maxwell!!!

  • Nampally on April 2, 2013, 19:45 GMT

    Mumbai is bit like Yankees Baseball team. But unlike Yankees, Mumbai spends money in buying players & putting them on the bench. Each team is allowed only 4 professionals. This means that the 7 local players have to be really good to win matches. Mumbai's batting & bowling are both unreliable because the so-called big names are not performing. It is an unplanned collection of too many super stars. Focus on 3 reliable batsmen + 3 good bowlers from overseas instead of wasting millions on guys who do not perform. From these 6 foreign players select 2 batsmen & 2 bowlers who are currently in form. The other 7 locals must fill in the missing needs. Tendulkar must play regularly or not at all. The same goes to the foreign players. Unsettled XI spells lack of team chemistry.T-20 is lot about team work by all XI. When Mumbai is so unsettled that it cannot even have a consistent XI, then they are collection of individuals. Individuals cannot win matches in Team sport. Please Wake up!

  • ravi2047 on April 2, 2013, 18:10 GMT

    Mumbai Indians can buy a maximum 30 good players, field a mere 11 of them on the field. Too many options are hurting them for the last 5 years. Why do they buy good players and bench them? It ultimately reduces the quality of IPL.

  • on April 2, 2013, 18:06 GMT

    Since MI made the overseas player as their captain like few other franchises like Pune, Hyderabad, etc., they have only three foreign players to choose from the list since Ponting will be playing all their matches. Ponting already crossed his prime and also not involved with T20 for Australia he has to do extra work to perform. Lasith Malinga, Kieron Pollard both pick themselves which means they could pick only one additional foreigner and who will that be from the big list of Oram, Maxwell, Dwyne Smith, Hughes, Franklin, Blizzard, Mitchell Johnson and so on. The job of the captain and the coach are going to be very interesting to select the right combination. Horses for courses policy can be adopted but can they afford to leave Pollard or Malinga? I wish MI all the best to perform better than previous years. Title? yes possible if they work as a team. Good Luck!!!

  • awalia on April 4, 2013, 6:48 GMT

    MI has already lost the IPL 6 with Tendulakr as opner and ponting at one down will slow down the game as both of them are not able to hit more than run a ball for me its all over for mumbai

  • FATEHPUR.PARIS11 on April 4, 2013, 2:46 GMT

    team for today. MI sachin, maxwell, pointing, rohit, karthik, pollard, raydu, harbhajan, munaf, ojha/kukkarni, johnson/Cnile. RCB Dilshan, gayle, kohli, tiwari, mayank, mcdonald, karthik, muralidharan, vinay, 2 more indian bowlers

  • on April 3, 2013, 20:21 GMT

    Even though mumbai have ponting , pollord, maxwell or rohit ..... that team only proud with the master blaster Sachin.......

  • Paddy789 on April 3, 2013, 13:07 GMT

    Nathan Coulter-Nile should be the 4th Overseas player in the playing XI. He is a very good allrounder. Maxwell shouldl only warm bench despite being highly paid.

  • mmmuthukumar on April 3, 2013, 12:28 GMT

    When IPL started CSK's Vijay, Raina and Ashwin was not in Indian team. Jadeja too was not a permanent member of Indian XI. It had only Dhoni. The team performed well and slowly one by one went into Indian team. So no grudges here. CSK released Parthiv Patel toowho performed decently. CSK won because it picked two teams, one is the playing twelve and the second twelve. Paid more to the first team. they never chop and change often. you often see the same players every game. winning becomes a habit here.

  • vish57 on April 3, 2013, 11:46 GMT

    The difference between few top teams and teams such as KingsXI, Rajasthan Royals,Deccan Charges or Pune Warriors is the poor representation of Indian Players in these teams. Like a cap on Foreign players to 11 per team, they should cap contracted Indian Players to 5 per team and BCCI as such giving contract close to 40 players. Players like Abhinav Mukund who has played for India in test macthes in WI and England decently has not made his debut in IPL becasue he was cooling himeslef in CSK bench. CSK is 1/2 Indian team with Raina, Vijay,AShwin, Jadega, Dhoni in Playing XI while Rajasthan Royals is just having Rahane and SunRisers is having Shekhar Dhawan and Ishanth Sharma, KingsXI none at best Praveen Kumar and Pune Warriors Yuvraj and Bhubaneswar Kumar . If Chennai holds 5 Indian players and 4 overseas players and players such as Badrinath , virtual 10/11 are international palyers, they bound to win for ever.

  • on April 3, 2013, 7:02 GMT

    It is not about captaincy or Talent. The opening combination is crucial. Mumbai has rarely made use of the first 6 PP overs. They most often end up with a score of around 55-65 in the first 10...Then accelerate slowly to reach 100-110 by 16 and then go for somesenseless hitting and finally ending up with 130-140. The first thing Mumbai need is a dashing start, even if they lose a couple of wickets, 85/2 or 90/2 at the end of 10 overs is way better than 55/0 or 60/0. They have a strong line up with, ponting, rohit, karthik, Raydu in the middle nd Pollard to give the finishing touches. Sachin nd Smith to open and Raydu at No.3 would be perfect, followed by Ponting, Rohit, Karthik, Pollard (depending on Situation), Harbhajan, Malinga, Munaf, Ojha/Kulkarni, should be the best line-up Mumbai has based on the players I have seen...or they may even try opening with Maxwell!!!

  • Nampally on April 2, 2013, 19:45 GMT

    Mumbai is bit like Yankees Baseball team. But unlike Yankees, Mumbai spends money in buying players & putting them on the bench. Each team is allowed only 4 professionals. This means that the 7 local players have to be really good to win matches. Mumbai's batting & bowling are both unreliable because the so-called big names are not performing. It is an unplanned collection of too many super stars. Focus on 3 reliable batsmen + 3 good bowlers from overseas instead of wasting millions on guys who do not perform. From these 6 foreign players select 2 batsmen & 2 bowlers who are currently in form. The other 7 locals must fill in the missing needs. Tendulkar must play regularly or not at all. The same goes to the foreign players. Unsettled XI spells lack of team chemistry.T-20 is lot about team work by all XI. When Mumbai is so unsettled that it cannot even have a consistent XI, then they are collection of individuals. Individuals cannot win matches in Team sport. Please Wake up!

  • ravi2047 on April 2, 2013, 18:10 GMT

    Mumbai Indians can buy a maximum 30 good players, field a mere 11 of them on the field. Too many options are hurting them for the last 5 years. Why do they buy good players and bench them? It ultimately reduces the quality of IPL.

  • on April 2, 2013, 18:06 GMT

    Since MI made the overseas player as their captain like few other franchises like Pune, Hyderabad, etc., they have only three foreign players to choose from the list since Ponting will be playing all their matches. Ponting already crossed his prime and also not involved with T20 for Australia he has to do extra work to perform. Lasith Malinga, Kieron Pollard both pick themselves which means they could pick only one additional foreigner and who will that be from the big list of Oram, Maxwell, Dwyne Smith, Hughes, Franklin, Blizzard, Mitchell Johnson and so on. The job of the captain and the coach are going to be very interesting to select the right combination. Horses for courses policy can be adopted but can they afford to leave Pollard or Malinga? I wish MI all the best to perform better than previous years. Title? yes possible if they work as a team. Good Luck!!!

  • awalia on April 4, 2013, 6:48 GMT

    MI has already lost the IPL 6 with Tendulakr as opner and ponting at one down will slow down the game as both of them are not able to hit more than run a ball for me its all over for mumbai

  • FATEHPUR.PARIS11 on April 4, 2013, 2:46 GMT

    team for today. MI sachin, maxwell, pointing, rohit, karthik, pollard, raydu, harbhajan, munaf, ojha/kukkarni, johnson/Cnile. RCB Dilshan, gayle, kohli, tiwari, mayank, mcdonald, karthik, muralidharan, vinay, 2 more indian bowlers

  • on April 3, 2013, 20:21 GMT

    Even though mumbai have ponting , pollord, maxwell or rohit ..... that team only proud with the master blaster Sachin.......

  • Paddy789 on April 3, 2013, 13:07 GMT

    Nathan Coulter-Nile should be the 4th Overseas player in the playing XI. He is a very good allrounder. Maxwell shouldl only warm bench despite being highly paid.

  • mmmuthukumar on April 3, 2013, 12:28 GMT

    When IPL started CSK's Vijay, Raina and Ashwin was not in Indian team. Jadeja too was not a permanent member of Indian XI. It had only Dhoni. The team performed well and slowly one by one went into Indian team. So no grudges here. CSK released Parthiv Patel toowho performed decently. CSK won because it picked two teams, one is the playing twelve and the second twelve. Paid more to the first team. they never chop and change often. you often see the same players every game. winning becomes a habit here.

  • vish57 on April 3, 2013, 11:46 GMT

    The difference between few top teams and teams such as KingsXI, Rajasthan Royals,Deccan Charges or Pune Warriors is the poor representation of Indian Players in these teams. Like a cap on Foreign players to 11 per team, they should cap contracted Indian Players to 5 per team and BCCI as such giving contract close to 40 players. Players like Abhinav Mukund who has played for India in test macthes in WI and England decently has not made his debut in IPL becasue he was cooling himeslef in CSK bench. CSK is 1/2 Indian team with Raina, Vijay,AShwin, Jadega, Dhoni in Playing XI while Rajasthan Royals is just having Rahane and SunRisers is having Shekhar Dhawan and Ishanth Sharma, KingsXI none at best Praveen Kumar and Pune Warriors Yuvraj and Bhubaneswar Kumar . If Chennai holds 5 Indian players and 4 overseas players and players such as Badrinath , virtual 10/11 are international palyers, they bound to win for ever.

  • on April 3, 2013, 10:43 GMT

    Mumbai has a chance only if Rayudu batting at 3, made use of the first 6 PP overs and drop rohit sharma.

  • on April 3, 2013, 9:47 GMT

    very difficult for MI to win. suspect some ego issues inside the dressing room.Anyways, all the best MI, would love to see sachin do well. In a nutshell, I don't mind anybody winning as long as the two best ever Indians (Dravid & Sachin) do well for their respective teams and one them goes to win the Orange cap.

  • ashankar on April 3, 2013, 9:06 GMT

    @Nampally I agree with most of your points. But you have mentioned that only 4 Professionals and 7 Local players!!! What the hell does that mean? Sachin, Rohit and Bhajji are not professionals?! I know you meant foreign players but still it is appalling to read that!!! And i would say mumbai did not get the combination right but their local talent and the way they hired domestice players is commendable. Rayudu is not known to many until he came to MI. They have to settle for the right combo early in the tournament and they would be a huge challenge. And if you look their record is not too bad. They are almost close everytime. So just that early jelling would help in the long run. Thank you!

  • timtom on April 3, 2013, 7:57 GMT

    2010 was THE BEST IPL so far with each team having a chance in semifinal till last match. And MI was the best team failing in final... No surprises Sachin was the best player too.. Those days are gone... Need a settled team.

  • class9ryan on April 3, 2013, 7:15 GMT

    Mumbai Indians is actually not the best side this year. Maybe on paper, they look formidable but the bottom line reads out something different. Rohit Sharma, Munaf Patel, Harbhajan are not at their best.... Tendulkar is unpredictable at the moment because we cant conclude whether he is in form looking at Ind vs Aus series. Maxwell and Ponting will have to play a few matches, before we can conclude they are fit for these conditions. Now, when u have key players in such problems, Mumbai Indians have to actually think about the team combination seriously this year.

  • satishchandar on April 3, 2013, 5:25 GMT

    Mumbai - They had one great IPL season where they ended up as runners.. It was primarily because of Sachin as a sure starter, emergence of Rayudu and Tiwary as big bats in the middle overs and Pollard as finisher.. They didn't have much tinkering with the playing 11 those days.. But with the signing of RP, Karthik, Suman, Ojha and Rohit, they are now a completely unsettled team.. They themselves doesn't seem to be clear of who their match winner is.. Now Rayudu is doing a completely different role to the one he did the best - batting at 3.. Maxwell for 1m$ and no vacancy in the 11 is just a joke.. Malinga and Pollard should play given their proficiency in the format.. Ponting will play for sure.. Are they going to give the fourth slot to Maxwell?

  • Lakpj on April 3, 2013, 5:11 GMT

    Mumbai has a chance only if Malinga fires, he is the best thing MI has when it comes to winning close games. All the others are old superstars who have passed their hay days and players who fire once in every10 games.

  • Sharath274 on April 3, 2013, 5:09 GMT

    @ Nampally - well said.. cant agree more... they have always gone a bit overboard with their spending... and no settled combination will hurt them big time if they continue in the same way...i just cannot digest that they spend a million dollar on Maxwell...

  • on April 3, 2013, 4:38 GMT

    So, Rayudu is nobody in this team? Watch out, people, it's Rayudu's season. He's in a very good form and will again be in the spotlight.

  • ramab on April 3, 2013, 3:12 GMT

    Ponting may be a good captain, but remains to be seen how he will fit in the scheme of IPL (due to 4 foreign player restriction). It could be a situation of playing George Bailey in World T20 championship because he is the captain. But MI looks like a bunch of overpaid misfits, definitely not a team like Nampally said.

  • xylo on April 3, 2013, 2:30 GMT

    Ponting is their only hope... You can have all the big names in your team, but without a good captain, the team operates at 50%. Maxwell will end up being the butt of jokes at the end of this season. One big reason CSK has been consistently good is because of Dhoni and Fleming - that is like having Kasparov and Vish Anand onone side... and Harbhajan on the other.

  • Crick_Expert on April 3, 2013, 1:52 GMT

    IPL management should play fair game and add PAK players. without world class PAK players its a club level series, nothing else.....

  • YS_USA on April 3, 2013, 1:29 GMT

    IPL has lost its India connection. They should allow 5 to 6 foreign players to make it more exciting.

  • SL_Boy on April 2, 2013, 21:26 GMT

    Kaushal Perea should be the one to keep eye on

  • likeintcricket on April 2, 2013, 21:16 GMT

    4 international player policy means many international star are sitting out.

  • fah2 on April 2, 2013, 20:47 GMT

    MI just don't have headache in picking 1 overseas but also picking their Indian bowlers if Harbhajan and Ojha both play they already have Malinga but who will partner Malinga is a big question?

  • indirockz on April 2, 2013, 19:38 GMT

    Sachin, Rohit (yes opening), Punter, Rayudu, Pollard/Smith (I'd go for smith as he is more consistent than one match star pollard), Kartik, Mexwell/Oram/MJ, Suman, Malinga, Kulkarni/RP/Munaf (rotate them), Jalaj/Ojha (No Harbhajan pls)

  • on April 2, 2013, 18:34 GMT

    My XI 1.SACHIN 2.Rohit 3.Ponting 4.Karthik/Tare 5.Pollard 6.Maxwell 7.Rayadu 8.Malinga 9.Munaf 10&11 Harbhajan/Ojha/D Kulkarni/R Dhawan/J Saxena/A Nechim As we see Rohit open in recent one day, so I think he will open with SACHIN. Moreover Dhawan & Saxena will be next top all-rounder. Moreover A Tare is good wicketkeeper batsman. If any foreign player flops then we can replace.

  • MAK123 on April 2, 2013, 18:32 GMT

    What a beautiful and romantic article

  • on April 2, 2013, 18:06 GMT

    My goodness!!! So many star players??? It seems more like a policy where MI, to win the tournament, want to deny other teams good players...Still have not been successful though...!!!

  • omyadav on April 2, 2013, 18:02 GMT

    The reason behind MI not being successful was captaincy. Hope Ponting makes the difference as a captain.

  • Surajrises on April 2, 2013, 17:50 GMT

    @Narbavi: I so agree with you! MI just keep buying players for a good price and bench them! I mean we know Mukesh Ambani has that kind of money to be spent but at the same time, by benching good players like RP Singh & Ojha, u r making them lose their form! Any Cricketer needs to keep playing to be in good form! Its really been difficult to understand Mumbai Indians' tactics over the past 6 years!

  • vigneshvinu on April 2, 2013, 17:18 GMT

    1.Tendulkar 2. Ponting 3. R.Sharma 4. Karthik 5. Rayudu 6. Pollard 7. Harbhajan 8. D. smith 9. Munaf 10. Malinga 11. Kulkarni

  • on April 2, 2013, 17:12 GMT

    MI should go 4 rotatn policy : Sachin , ( Smith / Blizard / Huges ) , Ponting , Rohit , (Kartik ,Tare) , ( Rayudu / Yadav / Sushant ) , ( Pollard / Maxwel l/ Franklin/ Oram ) , (Harbajan / Ojha) , (Malinga / Johnson / Nathan) ,( Nechim / Kulkarni / Dhawan ), ( Munaf /Saxena/Pawan )

  • Coltsmc on April 2, 2013, 16:58 GMT

    Best Wishes to Mumbai Indians :) Go Team

  • iHitWicket on April 2, 2013, 16:28 GMT

    Are you kidding me? To take the name of Pollard in the same breath as Sir Gary Sobers is blasphemy - even if its T20. You spoke of Tendulkar, Pointing and Kumble as institutions - quite true - living legends and then you talk of Pollard .. what a let down. If its T-20 Chris Gayle along with these giants I can live with - NOT Keiron Pollard. You need to write about IPL and it needs to be as bombastic as the tournament it self - but pls be truthful to Cricket.

  • on April 2, 2013, 16:25 GMT

    @santha kumar..R P Singh is not in the squad of MI this year. he has been left out after last year's IPL. My playing XI 1. Tendulkar 2. Ponting 3. Rohit 4. Rayudu 5. Karthik 6. Pollard 7. Oram 8. Malinga 9. Ojha 10. R. Dhawan

  • Narbavi on April 2, 2013, 16:14 GMT

    You can spend all you want, but this is what you get when u disturb a level playing field, i don't really hate any ipl team but i do hate MI, the sheer reason being buying every good talent available and making them sit in the bench like they did with rp singh and pragyan ojha last year, this year is no different too!!

  • penagamuri on April 2, 2013, 15:29 GMT

    no mention of Rohit Sharma .... he is their main stay in batting /././ after sachin he will be the key player in the line up and will be raring to go as he is eager to get back in to the side ...

  • on April 2, 2013, 15:29 GMT

    My XI 1.Sachin 2.Ponting 3.Rayudu 4.Rohit 5.Dinesh 6.Pollard 7.Oram/Maxwell /D.Smith 8.Malinga 9.Munaf 10.Harbhajan/Ojha 11.R.Dhawan/R.P.Singh

  • Shajahan.P on April 2, 2013, 15:29 GMT

    How money playing against the player. The both men seriously fought for Spirit of Cricket.

  • Shajahan.P on April 2, 2013, 15:29 GMT

    How money playing against the player. The both men seriously fought for Spirit of Cricket.

  • on April 2, 2013, 15:29 GMT

    My XI 1.Sachin 2.Ponting 3.Rayudu 4.Rohit 5.Dinesh 6.Pollard 7.Oram/Maxwell /D.Smith 8.Malinga 9.Munaf 10.Harbhajan/Ojha 11.R.Dhawan/R.P.Singh

  • penagamuri on April 2, 2013, 15:29 GMT

    no mention of Rohit Sharma .... he is their main stay in batting /././ after sachin he will be the key player in the line up and will be raring to go as he is eager to get back in to the side ...

  • Narbavi on April 2, 2013, 16:14 GMT

    You can spend all you want, but this is what you get when u disturb a level playing field, i don't really hate any ipl team but i do hate MI, the sheer reason being buying every good talent available and making them sit in the bench like they did with rp singh and pragyan ojha last year, this year is no different too!!

  • on April 2, 2013, 16:25 GMT

    @santha kumar..R P Singh is not in the squad of MI this year. he has been left out after last year's IPL. My playing XI 1. Tendulkar 2. Ponting 3. Rohit 4. Rayudu 5. Karthik 6. Pollard 7. Oram 8. Malinga 9. Ojha 10. R. Dhawan

  • iHitWicket on April 2, 2013, 16:28 GMT

    Are you kidding me? To take the name of Pollard in the same breath as Sir Gary Sobers is blasphemy - even if its T20. You spoke of Tendulkar, Pointing and Kumble as institutions - quite true - living legends and then you talk of Pollard .. what a let down. If its T-20 Chris Gayle along with these giants I can live with - NOT Keiron Pollard. You need to write about IPL and it needs to be as bombastic as the tournament it self - but pls be truthful to Cricket.

  • Coltsmc on April 2, 2013, 16:58 GMT

    Best Wishes to Mumbai Indians :) Go Team

  • on April 2, 2013, 17:12 GMT

    MI should go 4 rotatn policy : Sachin , ( Smith / Blizard / Huges ) , Ponting , Rohit , (Kartik ,Tare) , ( Rayudu / Yadav / Sushant ) , ( Pollard / Maxwel l/ Franklin/ Oram ) , (Harbajan / Ojha) , (Malinga / Johnson / Nathan) ,( Nechim / Kulkarni / Dhawan ), ( Munaf /Saxena/Pawan )

  • vigneshvinu on April 2, 2013, 17:18 GMT

    1.Tendulkar 2. Ponting 3. R.Sharma 4. Karthik 5. Rayudu 6. Pollard 7. Harbhajan 8. D. smith 9. Munaf 10. Malinga 11. Kulkarni

  • Surajrises on April 2, 2013, 17:50 GMT

    @Narbavi: I so agree with you! MI just keep buying players for a good price and bench them! I mean we know Mukesh Ambani has that kind of money to be spent but at the same time, by benching good players like RP Singh & Ojha, u r making them lose their form! Any Cricketer needs to keep playing to be in good form! Its really been difficult to understand Mumbai Indians' tactics over the past 6 years!