Mumbai Indians IPL 2014 preview April 12, 2014

Niggles for Mumbai amid big-name hype

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Agarkar: Mumbai Indians squad might be lacking depth

Probable first XI

1 Michael Hussey, 2 Aditya Tare, 3 Rohit Sharma, 4 Ambati Rayudu, 5 CM Gautam (wk)/Jalaj Saxena, 6 Kieron Pollard, 7 Corey Anderson, 8 Harbhajan Singh, 9 Zaheer Khan, 10 Lasith Malinga 11 Pragyan Ojha
Full squad

2013 finish

Champions. Won their maiden IPL title after reaching their second final.

Big picture

Mumbai Indians were one of three IPL teams to retain the maximum number of players before the auction, but are missing two big names that contributed heavily to the title win last season - Dinesh Karthik and Mitchell Johnson.

In spite of these absences, they still have a formidable line-up of foreign batsmen, especially with the addition of Michael Hussey at the top of the order and the all-round skills of Corey Anderson. The fitness of their two explosive allrounders, Anderson and Kieron Pollard, will be a concern for the team as both will come into the tournament with relatively little or no match practice. Pollard scored a first-class hundred recently, but he has played only two matches since the Champions League last October. Mumbai will be wary of how the knee injury may have impacted his ability in the field.

Their overseas players fit snugly into their roles, leaving two areas of concern for Mumbai - the wicketkeeper's slot and the spin-bowling department. Their relatively weak line-up of Indian batsmen may result in CM Gautam getting the gloves with Aditya Tare included as a full-time batsman. If Tare (or Ambati Rayudu) doubles up with the gloves, Mumbai could give allrounder Jalaj Saxena a look-in, re-inforcing their spin attack of Harbhajan Singh and Pragyan Ojha on the slower UAE tracks.

Big players

For the first time in the IPL, Michael Hussey will take the field in colours other than the bright yellow of Chennai Super Kings. He was the leading run-getter in IPL 2013 and has struck three fifties in this year's Big Bash League. His selection is key for Mumbai, who are missing some heft at the top of the order without Sachin Tendulkar and Dwayne Smith. Hussey's style of play will also allow Mumbai's line-up of stroke players to bat around him.

In one of the only two matches he played in the IPL last year, in the middle of a period outside the India team, Zaheer Khan took 4 for 17 against Chennai Super Kings. This season, things are different for Zaheer as he is fitter but his performances recently seem to have hit a plateau. Mumbai will be hoping he can hit a good run, especially as he will be looked at to lead the attack when Lasith Malinga is called up for national day in May.

Bargain buy

For a price of Rs 50 lakhs, Australia fast bowler Josh Hazlewood is a bargain, although Mumbai managed a good deal on the in-demand Corey Anderson as well. Hazlewood has been in good form over the last few months and his performances include a four-wicket haul against England in January and a six-for that helped New South Wales clinch the Sheffield Shield last month.

Availability

Mumbai will have a selection headache in May when Malinga would be called up for national duty on Sri Lanka's tour to England. The two ODIs against Ireland are on May 6 and 8, while the limited-overs series against England starts on May 20. Mumbai's back-up options are Hazlewood, South Africa's Marchant de Lange and West Indian Krishmar Santokie, who proved effective with the new ball in the recent World T20.

Odds

11/2 - third favourites behind Chennai Super Kings and Royal Challengers Bangalore.

Odds provided by Bet365

Rachna Shetty is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • on April 13, 2014, 8:12 GMT

    Overall it is a very good squad but with some glitches in the playing XI The problem for MI would be the "Number 5. spot" which is usually a very important spot in T20s. I think MI should move Corey Anderson up the order to no.4 or 5 and give him enough time to settle in for an assault. Pollard will provide the late blast... Instead of going in with Jalaj or gautam, MI should give Shreyas Gopal a try in the XI.He is a crafty leg spinner and he is full of confidence..Ohja(left arm tweak),Bhajji (off spin), Gopal (leg spin) will be a very very classical spin combination in dry pitches

  • on April 16, 2014, 12:07 GMT

    Mumbai looks to be a greater side with many stars. With Sachin as a mentor I think the tempo of the team will be very high and they will play aggressive cricket. The worry will be mainly about the local talent. We are not sure about how many matches Zaks will play. Pragyan & Bhajji will most likely be the mainstay bowlers. The questionable fact is the depth of their batting. Different conditions will really test the skills and temperament of Mumbai Indians. It will also depend on how many Million dollars shots Rohit will refrain from playing. They will dearly miss the presence of Smith who played a vital role in winning the championship with flamboyount innings at will. Their fielding is superb. But KKR on their day are ruthless demolishing side.

  • on April 16, 2014, 7:33 GMT

    mumbai can include sushanth marathe in their playing eleven. mumbai also has santokie to replace malinga in few matches.mike hussey will play the anchor role and others should just bat around him. mumbai is a better balanced side than any other team. i feel sushanth marathe should be given a chance at no 3 atleast for five consecutive matches. if he comes gud then the middle order problem is over.who else can accelerate better than the trio of pollard, anderson and harbhajan.and bowling has variety with malinga,zaheer,harbhajan,ojha,anderson and pollard.so guys dont under rate mumbai atleast for one reason that the master wil be their mentor............we r waiting............

  • on April 15, 2014, 14:56 GMT

    Many people thinking MI made mistake not retaining Johnson & Maxwell. But I think its only MI has shown maximum matureness while selecting the squade. And I am in strong opinon, CSK made big big mistake not retaining great player Hussey. Hussey is marvelous player in any format. He has huge temparament on groung. Just cant understand why CSK left Hussey. MI has done very right thing picking Hussey immediately. CSK may suffer by their decision. Secondly MI rightely picked Anderson, as we have seen Andersons agression in last few matches. Plus Anderson is all rounder and very handy bowler. Overall MI is loking well balaced team. This time Rohit will definately open the innings with Hussey. Malinga, Zahir Khan, Bhajji, Oza etc is very good bowling line up MI has. Rohit is improving as a great leader. After impessive international performance Rohit definately will be a different player to watch in this IPL. This time I thing Rohit & Virat will try to show their leadership tallent vs MSD.

  • on April 15, 2014, 6:28 GMT

    They have a fair chance of making it to the playoffs. Pollard has been more and more consistent over the years and Corey Anderson is not all that inconsistent like pollard was in his first season plus he is a much better bowler than some people think .Has a knack of getting wickets . People underestimating Zaheer Khan too as he can be a great bowler in the death. Its extremely sad that people do not realize this.Our bowling is great if Zak shows good form and if Bhajji Ojha and Malinga continue great form of last year.I am hoping that M.Hussey also carries some good form from last year.Rohit Sharma is a god at ipl will score runs most probably. Rayadu is the big concern for me as over the seasons his performance has dipped but can also provide solid knocks.Jalaj will pip goutham as Tare also keeps and Jalaj provides a good spin option ..I think Corey will come at No.5. The main problem with Harbhajan maybe that he has not bowled at all in Syed Mushtaq Ali .Overall its a good team.

  • srinideva on April 15, 2014, 4:43 GMT

    I would be surprised if they reach top 4 in this season. There is no power in this batting line up. Pollard and Anderson are typical players. they Will have tough time in this year as there top order looks weak.

  • Bruisers on April 14, 2014, 15:34 GMT

    A good looking team, but they lack bench strength in the batting department. That No.5 position and Pollard's fitness add to the concern. They should have picked a couple of young Indian batsmen.

  • Speng on April 14, 2014, 14:11 GMT

    If you only mention Santokie parenthetically in the last paragraph you are making a mistake for four overs he can be magic as we saw in the World T20.

  • 10000000 on April 14, 2014, 11:51 GMT

    good side will paly finals this year again.

  • CricketMaan on April 14, 2014, 9:00 GMT

    Teams will have BIG dilema to spice up thier batting or bowling with overseas players. Lack of good strong Indian pace bowlers means you have to have 1 overseas pace bowling which could be a determent to plans as most teams would rather prefer strong overseas batsmen. For instance RCB would rather have 4 overseas batsman rather than having Starc in the bowling and CSK would prefer Mac over Hilfy in the XI. Some problems remain in IPL 7 unless India finds good strong pace bolwers, this will continue. I'm looking forward to see how a Rish Dhawan will stand up or if Irfan will show that he still has it in him. That is where India too is intrested. A good show from Gauti or Ishant might confuse selectors but i dobut both are in plans for 2015 WC although Ishant still has trust from Dhoni.

  • on April 13, 2014, 8:12 GMT

    Overall it is a very good squad but with some glitches in the playing XI The problem for MI would be the "Number 5. spot" which is usually a very important spot in T20s. I think MI should move Corey Anderson up the order to no.4 or 5 and give him enough time to settle in for an assault. Pollard will provide the late blast... Instead of going in with Jalaj or gautam, MI should give Shreyas Gopal a try in the XI.He is a crafty leg spinner and he is full of confidence..Ohja(left arm tweak),Bhajji (off spin), Gopal (leg spin) will be a very very classical spin combination in dry pitches

  • on April 16, 2014, 12:07 GMT

    Mumbai looks to be a greater side with many stars. With Sachin as a mentor I think the tempo of the team will be very high and they will play aggressive cricket. The worry will be mainly about the local talent. We are not sure about how many matches Zaks will play. Pragyan & Bhajji will most likely be the mainstay bowlers. The questionable fact is the depth of their batting. Different conditions will really test the skills and temperament of Mumbai Indians. It will also depend on how many Million dollars shots Rohit will refrain from playing. They will dearly miss the presence of Smith who played a vital role in winning the championship with flamboyount innings at will. Their fielding is superb. But KKR on their day are ruthless demolishing side.

  • on April 16, 2014, 7:33 GMT

    mumbai can include sushanth marathe in their playing eleven. mumbai also has santokie to replace malinga in few matches.mike hussey will play the anchor role and others should just bat around him. mumbai is a better balanced side than any other team. i feel sushanth marathe should be given a chance at no 3 atleast for five consecutive matches. if he comes gud then the middle order problem is over.who else can accelerate better than the trio of pollard, anderson and harbhajan.and bowling has variety with malinga,zaheer,harbhajan,ojha,anderson and pollard.so guys dont under rate mumbai atleast for one reason that the master wil be their mentor............we r waiting............

  • on April 15, 2014, 14:56 GMT

    Many people thinking MI made mistake not retaining Johnson & Maxwell. But I think its only MI has shown maximum matureness while selecting the squade. And I am in strong opinon, CSK made big big mistake not retaining great player Hussey. Hussey is marvelous player in any format. He has huge temparament on groung. Just cant understand why CSK left Hussey. MI has done very right thing picking Hussey immediately. CSK may suffer by their decision. Secondly MI rightely picked Anderson, as we have seen Andersons agression in last few matches. Plus Anderson is all rounder and very handy bowler. Overall MI is loking well balaced team. This time Rohit will definately open the innings with Hussey. Malinga, Zahir Khan, Bhajji, Oza etc is very good bowling line up MI has. Rohit is improving as a great leader. After impessive international performance Rohit definately will be a different player to watch in this IPL. This time I thing Rohit & Virat will try to show their leadership tallent vs MSD.

  • on April 15, 2014, 6:28 GMT

    They have a fair chance of making it to the playoffs. Pollard has been more and more consistent over the years and Corey Anderson is not all that inconsistent like pollard was in his first season plus he is a much better bowler than some people think .Has a knack of getting wickets . People underestimating Zaheer Khan too as he can be a great bowler in the death. Its extremely sad that people do not realize this.Our bowling is great if Zak shows good form and if Bhajji Ojha and Malinga continue great form of last year.I am hoping that M.Hussey also carries some good form from last year.Rohit Sharma is a god at ipl will score runs most probably. Rayadu is the big concern for me as over the seasons his performance has dipped but can also provide solid knocks.Jalaj will pip goutham as Tare also keeps and Jalaj provides a good spin option ..I think Corey will come at No.5. The main problem with Harbhajan maybe that he has not bowled at all in Syed Mushtaq Ali .Overall its a good team.

  • srinideva on April 15, 2014, 4:43 GMT

    I would be surprised if they reach top 4 in this season. There is no power in this batting line up. Pollard and Anderson are typical players. they Will have tough time in this year as there top order looks weak.

  • Bruisers on April 14, 2014, 15:34 GMT

    A good looking team, but they lack bench strength in the batting department. That No.5 position and Pollard's fitness add to the concern. They should have picked a couple of young Indian batsmen.

  • Speng on April 14, 2014, 14:11 GMT

    If you only mention Santokie parenthetically in the last paragraph you are making a mistake for four overs he can be magic as we saw in the World T20.

  • 10000000 on April 14, 2014, 11:51 GMT

    good side will paly finals this year again.

  • CricketMaan on April 14, 2014, 9:00 GMT

    Teams will have BIG dilema to spice up thier batting or bowling with overseas players. Lack of good strong Indian pace bowlers means you have to have 1 overseas pace bowling which could be a determent to plans as most teams would rather prefer strong overseas batsmen. For instance RCB would rather have 4 overseas batsman rather than having Starc in the bowling and CSK would prefer Mac over Hilfy in the XI. Some problems remain in IPL 7 unless India finds good strong pace bolwers, this will continue. I'm looking forward to see how a Rish Dhawan will stand up or if Irfan will show that he still has it in him. That is where India too is intrested. A good show from Gauti or Ishant might confuse selectors but i dobut both are in plans for 2015 WC although Ishant still has trust from Dhoni.

  • StevieS on April 14, 2014, 7:35 GMT

    Prázäd Krîs you are right, that is why Mumbai should of brought Kane WIlliamson, not sure if his name was even in the hat but he is becomming New Zealands best player in all forms of the game. He is also New Zealands best player of spin, and had a good world cup. He is a very technical batsman and plays proper cricket shots while still hitting boundries and rotating the strike. Maybe next season he will make himself available.

  • Ramesh_Joseph on April 14, 2014, 5:34 GMT

    Mumbai is a totally different team when Malinga is not playing. They are going to miss him very badly during the business end of the tournament, when the SL team is touring UK.

  • on April 14, 2014, 5:25 GMT

    MI has only powerhitters and not technical players. They changed upto 6 captains, sponsors, jerseys and so, even in previous edition they had lost in semis, but they had another chance so they grabbed the cup! Their target is to spend for a player who performs in other teams. Right from pollard, Levi, Maxwell and now Hussey, Anderson etc., Their core team is with initial stages of IPL where they cant able to reach even in semis.

  • D-Coach on April 14, 2014, 4:57 GMT

    MI in Batting Order 1. M.Hussy, 2. A.Tare, 3. R.Sharma, 4. A.Rayudu, 5. K.Pollard, 6. (i)J.Saxena / (ii)C.Goutham 7. C.Anderson, 8. H.Singh, 9. Z.Khan, 10. L.Malinga 11. P.Ojha

    Krishmar Santokie is good option inplace of Zaheer. But MI does not have any local player in the caliber of good batting to leave out Anderson or M.Hussey to bring Santokie in.

    All the best MI for IPL 2014.

  • on April 14, 2014, 4:08 GMT

    MI in Batting Order 1. M.Hussy, 2. A.Tare, 3. R.Sharma, 4. A.Rayudu, 5. K.Pollard, 6. (i)J.Saxena / (ii)C.Goutham 7. C.Anderson, 8. H.Singh, 9. Z.Khan, 10. L.Malinga 11. P.Ojha

    Krishmar Santokie is good option inplace of Zaheer. But MI does not have any local player in the caliber of good batting to leave out Anderson or M.Hussey to bring Santokie in.

    All the best MI for IPL 2014.

  • on April 14, 2014, 1:53 GMT

    For me it goes: 1. Hussey (os) 2. Tare 3. Rohit (Captain) 4. Rayudu 5. Anderson (os) 6. Pollard (os) 7. Gautam (wk) 8. Bhaji 9. Khan 10. Malinga 11. Ojha

  • Clyde on April 14, 2014, 1:10 GMT

    @Cpt.Meanster. The heavily manipulated forms of the game give me the pip, Captain. I would be interested if the circle and a number of other fiddles with the game were eliminated. But just doing away with the circle (Power Plays) would be a vast improvement. Meanwhile, I am so put off that I can't watch, and so may be quite uninformed about the rules of IPL and ODIs. I was put off a long time ago, and have not returned, except to grumble. I am particular, the sort of person who refuses to read articles that use the present tense to relate past events. This and ODIs are two things that make me feel a little nauseous. To be more rounded, I must include administrative corruption among my aversions.

  • YogifromNY on April 14, 2014, 1:01 GMT

    Zaheer bought in place of Johnson. Dinesh Karthik let go. Harbhajan Singh retained. What a joke. MI has no hope this year due to these three glaring errors.

    Hussey will no doubt compensate for Smith's absence (CSK's loss - yes, they were thinking long term as he is old, but somehow I think Hussey will not end like Gilchrist did and will be a force to reckon with while he plays). Tendulkar retired is a great thing for MI - and for others who loved watching him over the years but realized that he was about two years past his "best by" date.

  • sheru-sher on April 13, 2014, 19:53 GMT

    MI looks like the side to beat in this tournament as there are quite a few flat tract batsmen Nohit, Anderson and Pollard will make merry. Then Malinga will make it difficult for the opposition.

  • on April 13, 2014, 18:08 GMT

    This squad remind me of clt20 2011. where all key player of mi were injured thus harbhajan singh inspired them to clt20 title.hoping for same inspirational leadership from Rohit sharma.

  • Cpt.Meanster on April 13, 2014, 17:54 GMT

    Mumbai have made the same mistakes that they did in the past. Fill in their squad with some very good overseas players but completely ignore the Indian options. This year, they lack quality Indian domestic batsmen to fill in that gaping hole in the middle order. So technically what Mumbai are hoping for is that the bulk of their run scoring needs to be done by Hussey, Rohit, Anderson and Pollard. That to me sends the wrong signal to the fans. I can't believe they got rid of Dinesh Karthik and retained Rayudu who is an average player at the least. Tare is good but not exceptional. I can't see how Mumbai can chase down stiff targets but if they bat first, they can definitely put on scores in excess of 160.

  • Cpt.Meanster on April 13, 2014, 17:39 GMT

    @Clyde: What do you want to get over with ? #DoesNotMakeSense

  • parikshit_Ops on April 13, 2014, 17:30 GMT

    @Vishanath, on Contrary I believe Mumbai Indians did a really good thing by picking Tare. As we saw in lst IPL he has this big hitting ability. Just give him some confidence and he Would deliver. He also is a decent Keeper which would save an extra place whcih wouldnt have been possible with pandey/Mandeep. Importantly he is a Mumbaikar, familar with Mumbai conditions. Good to have a local player from the territiry, it also increases the interest of local fans who are team's permanent supporters. Hope Jalaj Saxena and Anderson comes good for Mumbai, they wouldn't face much probs in Batting then. Go MUMBAI Go!!

  • on April 13, 2014, 17:18 GMT

    I think MI will have nightmares for leading the bowling attack by Zaheer Khan

  • Mr.CricketJKNotHussey on April 13, 2014, 17:09 GMT

    @ksquared I agree that the management and Dhoni were also to blame, but the point I was initially making was that we didn't lose the WC because Malinga unraveled our batsmen's weaknesses (through the IPL), they did so due to Yuvraj sucking the momentum. I never said Raina would have won us the match, I said the outcome would have been different i.e. we would have posted a better total. I can say this because Raina has much faster hands than Yuvi and is in much better for. So at the very least he would have managed to take a single fast so Kohli could get into his rhythm again. And if he got out, he wouldn't have eaten up 21 balls. CSK are still a formidable force but those issues could hurt them. RCB though has a very weak bowling attack. Especially in the spin department, without Murali, it is almost non existent. Plus, they have to leave a foreign player to accommodate him. Yuvi's form also hurts them tremendously and they have no good back ups due to splurging on him.

  • on April 13, 2014, 15:43 GMT

    MI are the probably the strongest squad in all departments - battig, bowling, all-rounders. They could miss the batting services of D Smith and Sachin in the top and KArthik in the middle, who excelled in the last season. Hopefully the experienced Hussey and Rohit should compensate for that. The bowling is extremely strong anyways.

  • ksquared on April 13, 2014, 15:29 GMT

    @ Mr.CricketJKNotHussey u r probably half right about yuvi costing IND the match but the captain and the team management should take the blame as well. Besides SL did bowl very well and planned better than IND. Unless u r Nostradamus U can't predict Raina would have won u the match he might have gotten out for zero for all we know. The only thing that counts is how u perform on day. BTW Sanga was a miserable failure throughout the tournament but came to the party when it counted. I have a feeling that this year is going to be RCBs year. They have a great squad plus the offfield issues are bound to affect CSK in some way or another. I think MI bowling is probably going to be their weak link with Malinga not playing all the games.

  • on April 13, 2014, 14:07 GMT

    I think also we are overlooking that Mumbai has the West Indian Santokie from all of your comments I think everyone is underestimating him. He bowled well in the recent 20/20 WC only had one really bad match. However I think he will be a force to reckon with on these Indian wickets which would be similar to the Bangladesh wickets. Additionally, he offers a better variety in his bowling compared to Zaheer do not be surprise if he doesnot start as I think he would make a better opening bowler to Maliga than Zaheer. Also when Malinga leaves to represent SL he can lead that bowling attack alongside Zaheer. The batting will be missing Smith but Rohit Sharma has blossom lately so it should be an interesting season.

  • LongLiveTestCricket on April 13, 2014, 13:47 GMT

    Tope order has to be a concenr with the last year''s openers - Tendulkar/Smith- and No. 3 Karthik gone.Hussey is a good replacement for the role Tendulkar played and he can bat through but there is no serious firepower from the other end somehting which Dwayne Smith used to provide. Actually there would be too much pressure on Rohit, Pollard and then Corey too up the ante in later overs. Although bowling looks settled and could provide them some respite in some games.

  • on April 13, 2014, 12:33 GMT

    MI have probably a weeker team this time. They should have use the right to match card for either maxwell or johnson who will be available for the full season,unlike malinga. They dont have good indian batsmen other than rohit sharma. Aditya tare is a good player,but they should have tried for a good budding talent like munprit juneja,or mandeep singh or manish pandey... They will have a dilemma to play two wicket keepers and cm gautham isnt a great t20 player.. Their team depends more on hussey,rohit,polard and malinga..

  • on April 13, 2014, 12:12 GMT

    Their bench-strength last year was stronger than their playing eleven this year. Will be miss super-stars like Tendulkar, Ponting, Dwayne Smith, Karthik, Maxwell, and Johnson!

  • Nagendren on April 13, 2014, 12:01 GMT

    My XI:Hussey,Tare,Rayudu,Rohit,Pollard,Anderson,Saxena,harbhajan,ojha,malinga,zaheer

  • Mr.CricketJKNotHussey on April 13, 2014, 11:55 GMT

    @Nipuna U Wackwella I did in fact watch the match live which is why I say Yuvraj was at fault. Yes, the numbers indicate that Kohli and Dhoni did not play well either. But you have to look at the situation. Kohli had just found his rhythm, hitting a 16 run over, and Yuvraj starved him of strike for the next 3/4 balls while only scoring one run. At that point in the match, Kohli was forced to try and score, and naturally slogged, and missed (but still took a single). Yuvraj failed to hit the boundaries and failed to rotate strike to give a chance to Kohli. In the last 3 overs, Kohli faced 8 balls, 1 in 3 on an average. That is enough to throw the best off his game. Dhoni barely had match practice coming into that match, but he did make a mistake not sending Raina. I am not saying the Sri Lankans did not bowl well. I am just saying that had Yuvraj managed to give Kohli more consistent strike, or had Raina been there, the result would have been different.

  • priceless1 on April 13, 2014, 11:40 GMT

    Hussy is now old and out of touch , even in the last IPL he struggled to score runs quickly , good luck for MI if they are going to use him as one of the openers

  • Prasdhoni on April 13, 2014, 11:03 GMT

    Here`s a point..Going by statistics, Corey J.Anderson averages 14 with the bat and his economy is around 8 in the 37 T20 games he has played so far. most of his 37 t20s have been played in smaller NZ stadiums and also, during the world T20 in Bangladesh, Anderson was more of a bowler than a batsman.. I feel that he is going to struggle big time in the low and turning pitches of UAE.. IF MI uses Anderson as a bowler, it means that MI are virtually a batsman short.The only way MI can make an impact this season is by taking risks like sending pollard or corey up the order..or Send someone to pinch hit and give a good start thereby allowing HUSS master to build an innings.. if HUSS, rohit and bhajji play well, MI fans can hope for a cheerful season

  • ramz30380 on April 13, 2014, 10:52 GMT

    It will be strange to see Hussey playing in blue colors! MI can take a gamble by opening with Rohit and Hussey. While playing for CSK, Vijay was the agressor while Hussey providd the solid platform for the later big hitters to play their natural game. Likewise Rohit who has been consistently opening for India in the shorter formats can try his hand opening the innings.

    I thought tht MI lost a trick in not retaining DK. He had been very cruicial to the success of MI and also can bat at almost any position apart from donning the gloves. Also MI let go of MJ & Maxie - MI's loss became Punjab's gain! they wudnt have felt the heat even if Malinga leaves of MJ was on their side!

  • on April 13, 2014, 10:47 GMT

    Mr.CricketJKNotHussey Sri Lanka won the world cup not entirely thanks to Yuvi. In last 4 overs Yuvi got 6 from 8, Dhoni got 4 of 7, and most impotently Kholi got 6 from 8. India had a good 15th over and Kholi also got a chance to bat in the 16th and 17th over so I can't agree that Yuvi sucked all the the momentum. You better watch last 4 overs if you have the video. Please accept that SL bowled well at the depth overs. SL won because of a balanced blend of individual talents, analyzing, planning, and executing. It is very annoying to see still people blaming Yuvi.

    Talking about Mumbai Indians, to me the biggest blank is none other than Mitchell Guy Johnson. MI had a lethal bowling partnership of Lasith and MJ. With the form of Mitchell Johnson, any team would love to pick him and he is a big hitter as well. MI won last time thanks to Mitchell and Lasith bowling partnership as they had problems with their batting as I can remember. MI batting is OK but bowling is an issue-- MI fan

  • BRUTALANALYST on April 13, 2014, 10:17 GMT

    Dwayne Smith was actually their main player last year although he didn't get to play until almost halfway through after Mumbais terrible start with Ponting/Sachin and 1 or 2 other experiments Smith came in and saved the day he had vital knocks in vital finals games and also again in Champions League but for some reason he doesn't get the recognition.

  • Siva_Bala75 on April 13, 2014, 10:06 GMT

    MI should have retained Dinesh Karthik and Mitchel Johnson i/o Rayudu and Bhajji. Should find it very difficult to reach semis.

  • iam_10_Joshi on April 13, 2014, 10:01 GMT

    MI is looking still a good team not like previous season star budded but have enough potential.The main thing is "how they overcome from Sachin's absence"?. It is looking like ipl 2010 MI team enough resources but have to utilize them in proper way by captain. Raydu should be play at no.3 , because his avg in nearley 33 at this position and he played very well in 2010 and 2011 edition. Next ROHIT,ANDERSON and Polly for 7th we have Bhajji. I think they should be give chance to bumrah, he is in red hot form for gujrat, give some match practice ahead of jalaj and gautam, good bowling unit:maling,zak,bhajji,ojha,santokie. Overall a good team but have to play on potential, minor mistake can not be carried away.. ##MI fortune depend upon how ROHIT and Hussey will play?##Good luck MI

  • Mr.CricketJKNotHussey on April 13, 2014, 9:55 GMT

    @LALITHKURUWITA well, then according to your logic, none of the foreign players should play in the IPL since they would all learn the Indian Players' weaknesses. And if it is true, then shouldn't Indian batsmen learn how to play Malinga as well? The solution to the problem is not shutting it out, but facing it head on. Besides, India lost the final largely thanks to Yuvraj. had he not sucked the momentum out of that innings, They would have probably won. Kohli has unraveled Malinga's mystery and hit him for plenty in the past.

  • LALITHKURUWITA on April 13, 2014, 9:24 GMT

    India lost WC because of Slinga. Slinga should be dropped for all matches. Slinga said he learned all weaknesses of Indian Batsmen playing in IPL. Anyway can he learn weaknesses of all Australian ODI batsmen in this IPL so that he and SL beat Aus in the WC final on 29th March 2015 in MCC?

  • Mr.CricketJKNotHussey on April 13, 2014, 9:09 GMT

    I agree with the notion that Bumrah should play ahead of Jalaj or Gautam. Giving him match experience would be good, especially since Malinga will be leaving later. However, having so many seamers in the UAE might be detrimental. So, for the first leg, MI might consider playing Jalaj/Gopal to add depth to their bowling, but play them as bowlers only. They should not be coming ahead of Andersen or Pollard. Tare can Wk. I feel Pollard is more of a finisher so Andersen should come at 5 and Pollard at 6. Harbhajan is more than enough at 7 and then the bowlers can follow. This side has a lot of flexibility. Even losing Malinga or having someone injured can be overcome due to the presence of Santokie, Hazlewood and Dunk. However, Andersen and Pollard add balance to the team, something that no other player can cover for. So keeping them healthy will be the most important thing.

  • StevieS on April 13, 2014, 9:07 GMT

    Being a New Zealander I don't like to say it but Corey Anderson will struggle big time, like most New Zealanders he can't play spin to save his life, has a terrible 20/20 average both domestically and internationally. He is a going to be a very good if not great 50 overs and test match all-rounder. Not sure about "no match practice" though, he has been playing practically none stop for months.

  • on April 13, 2014, 9:00 GMT

    not the same widout sachin.. dey won't reach semi final I predict

  • on April 13, 2014, 8:43 GMT

    Mumbai Indians don't have depth in batting. So the top 4 have to click every time. Zaheer is also past his prime and bowls from memory. He should be gone soon, certainly next year. MI will do well to groom and push other youngsters as otherwise their top 4 will not last the tournament in maintains the form that will be required to enter the semis.

  • ZYRO on April 13, 2014, 8:39 GMT

    Jasprit Bumrah has to play instead of CM Gautam/ Jalaj saxena..Both Jalaj and Gautam's batting are not suited for T20 especially if they come at 3or4 down..Moreover Bumrah is in great form,good speed,good swing and a different action..he is bowling very good yorkers also..most of his wickets are bowled..he is the main reason why Gujarat did well in Syed Musthak Ali tournament and in Vijay Hazare tournament. Mumbai should have gone for Akshar Patel instead of Jalaj Saxena in the auction. Akshar patel is ideally suited for T20..4 good overs of left arm spin and a clean hitter lower down the order..Though Jalaj bowls decently well, he is in very poor form with his bat..even when he was in Good form he is more of a run a ball batsman..

  • on April 13, 2014, 8:38 GMT

    Whats Mean by the ODD here.I couldn't understand Whats that.......?

  • Ali_86xz on April 13, 2014, 8:33 GMT

    MI have a very strong team and can easily retain the trophy. Juts can't imagine Hussey in blue

  • Clyde on April 13, 2014, 8:29 GMT

    Just hurry up and get it over.

  • SajMc on April 13, 2014, 8:28 GMT

    Santokie is not a back up, after his performance in t20 world cup, he should regularly open the bowling for mumbai indians

  • Shahed.Akhtar on April 13, 2014, 8:24 GMT

    Nope, doesn't look at balanced / champion side at all. Cannot be a dark horse. Biggest mistake - to let go off Mitchell Johnson and Glenn Maxwell. Too much gamble on Pollard - much like the Yusuf Pathan gamble by KKR in the last two seasons. Possibly one of the weaker batting lineups plus no good bastsmen from the uncapped set. Will not qualify to the next stage.

  • on April 13, 2014, 8:05 GMT

    Looks a bit weaker than earlier edition.

  • on April 13, 2014, 8:02 GMT

    i predict that rohit sharma would be the orange cap winner this year if he plays at 3.Mumbai will win easily until malinga is playing but it would be difficult for them once he goes.bumrah should also play in the first match,his speed in vijay hazare trophy was 140 and he was swinging ball well.my team:- 1.hussey 2.tare(wk) 3.rohit 4.rayudu 5.pollard 6.corey 7.harbhajan 8.zaheer 9.malinga 10.ojha 11.bumrah

  • on April 13, 2014, 8:02 GMT

    i predict that rohit sharma would be the orange cap winner this year if he plays at 3.Mumbai will win easily until malinga is playing but it would be difficult for them once he goes.bumrah should also play in the first match,his speed in vijay hazare trophy was 140 and he was swinging ball well.my team:- 1.hussey 2.tare(wk) 3.rohit 4.rayudu 5.pollard 6.corey 7.harbhajan 8.zaheer 9.malinga 10.ojha 11.bumrah

  • on April 13, 2014, 8:05 GMT

    Looks a bit weaker than earlier edition.

  • Shahed.Akhtar on April 13, 2014, 8:24 GMT

    Nope, doesn't look at balanced / champion side at all. Cannot be a dark horse. Biggest mistake - to let go off Mitchell Johnson and Glenn Maxwell. Too much gamble on Pollard - much like the Yusuf Pathan gamble by KKR in the last two seasons. Possibly one of the weaker batting lineups plus no good bastsmen from the uncapped set. Will not qualify to the next stage.

  • SajMc on April 13, 2014, 8:28 GMT

    Santokie is not a back up, after his performance in t20 world cup, he should regularly open the bowling for mumbai indians

  • Clyde on April 13, 2014, 8:29 GMT

    Just hurry up and get it over.

  • Ali_86xz on April 13, 2014, 8:33 GMT

    MI have a very strong team and can easily retain the trophy. Juts can't imagine Hussey in blue

  • on April 13, 2014, 8:38 GMT

    Whats Mean by the ODD here.I couldn't understand Whats that.......?

  • ZYRO on April 13, 2014, 8:39 GMT

    Jasprit Bumrah has to play instead of CM Gautam/ Jalaj saxena..Both Jalaj and Gautam's batting are not suited for T20 especially if they come at 3or4 down..Moreover Bumrah is in great form,good speed,good swing and a different action..he is bowling very good yorkers also..most of his wickets are bowled..he is the main reason why Gujarat did well in Syed Musthak Ali tournament and in Vijay Hazare tournament. Mumbai should have gone for Akshar Patel instead of Jalaj Saxena in the auction. Akshar patel is ideally suited for T20..4 good overs of left arm spin and a clean hitter lower down the order..Though Jalaj bowls decently well, he is in very poor form with his bat..even when he was in Good form he is more of a run a ball batsman..

  • on April 13, 2014, 8:43 GMT

    Mumbai Indians don't have depth in batting. So the top 4 have to click every time. Zaheer is also past his prime and bowls from memory. He should be gone soon, certainly next year. MI will do well to groom and push other youngsters as otherwise their top 4 will not last the tournament in maintains the form that will be required to enter the semis.

  • on April 13, 2014, 9:00 GMT

    not the same widout sachin.. dey won't reach semi final I predict