Home > Features >

IPL 7 Player Retentions: Mumbai Indians shortlist best among the ocean of match-winners

Rohit Sharma has been retained by Mumbai Indians for the 2014 IPL season © IANS
Rohit Sharma has been retained by Mumbai Indians for the 2014 IPL season © IANS

The costliest Indian Premier League (IPL) franchisee was spoilt for choices when it came to retention. Abhijit Banare explains that Mumbai Indians’ players who have been retained indicate that the management considers them as the best among the various quality match-winners they had.

The team line-up of the Mumbai Indians often makes for great discussions. With the number of big-match players, both Indian and overseas, they are literally spoilt for choices. For once it wasn’t the fans but team owners scratching their heads over whom to retain. Or in other words, which player is likely to win them matches more consistently than the other. With that thought here’s the line-up:

Rohit Sharma, Kieron Pollard, Harbhajan Singh, Lasith Malinga and Ambati Rayudu

Considering the number of proven match-winners, it was expected that they had every reason to use their full quota of retaining five players. Question is whether they shortlisted the proper five? Only the end of the 2014 IPL season will tell.

Among the five, the easiest retentions were that of Rohit Sharma and Lasith Malinga. Rohit is one of the top T20 cricketers you would find in the world. In Rohit, Mumbai had found a leader in the last season who could lead with example and was proactive in the field. His record too has been more than impressive with an IPL title and a Champions League Trophy under his captaincy. Thus it was a complete package available in hand for the defending champions.

As far Malinga’s selection, there will be a debate over whether he was a better option than an in-form Mitchell Johnson. With Malinga not being in the best of form, Johnson was a prized catch with his pace, accuracy and form. Though Malinga hasn’t been in the greatest of form, one can never undermine his hunger to fight back and regain his magical touch. Season after season, the team management has showed their faith in the Sri Lankan pacer and will continue to do so this time around as well. Letting go off Johnson might have been the toughest decision they must have had.

As far as Kieron Pollard is concerned, Mumbai clearly wanted an all-rounder in the middle-order who could blast the opposition with the bat. And there was no one better than Pollard to do the job. In a similar role, Mumbai will set their eyes on Rishi Dhawan who has performed well for them and has had an equally good Ranji season.

The selection of Ambati Rayudu over Dinesh Karthik is yet another key decision with the latter being the more reliable one behind the stumps as well as with the bat up the order. With Rayudu’s selection, the Mumbai camp have taken a gamble and will be keen to either.

There were rumours that Harbhajan Singh might be dropped from the Mumbai’s retention plans. But Harbhajan’s selection means Mumbai have cemented the spinner’s spot. As mentioned earlier, one of the criteria for retention of players would be the matches the players can win time and again. In Pollard and Malinga, Mumbai already have players who could steal the show. Karthik vs Rayudu was just a call on who was their preferred wicketkeeper-batsman.

The opening slot is something they will be focusing on in the absence of Dwayne Smith and Sachin Tendulkar. In the past few seasons Mumbai had a good bunch of Indian players capped and uncapped along with the overseas ones. This time around they will have to plan for their auctions to fill in the top order and the pacer bowling list.

Catch all the news and articles on IPL 2014 Player Retentions here 

(Abhijit Banare is a reporter at CricketCountry. He is an avid quizzer and loves to analyse and dig out interesting facts which allows him to learn something new every day. Apart from cricket he also likes to keep a sharp eye on Indian politics, and can be followed on Twitter and blog)

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 30, 2014 (11:30 IST)   at Abu Dhabi

Sri Lanka tour of India, 2014

Nov 2, 2014 (13:30 IST)   at Cuttack

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Nov 3, 2014 (09:00 IST)   at Khulna

South Africa tour of Australia, 2014

Nov 5, 2014 (14:05 IST)   at Adelaide

Sri Lanka tour of India, 2014

Nov 6, 2014 (13:30 IST)   at Ahmedabad

More

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Nov 15, 2014  at Ahmedabad

Match cancelled

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Nov 7, 2014  at Bengaluru

Match cancelled

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 30, 2014  at Hyderabad

Match cancelled

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 27, 2014  at Hamilton

No result

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Oct 25, 2014  at Dhaka

Bangladesh won by 3 wkts

Photos

Pakistan vs Australia, 2nd Test

Videos

Tendulkar provides teaser on upcoming book

Live Cricket Score Duleep Trophy Central Zone vs South Zone, final at Delhi Day 3: Central Zone lead by 111 runs at the end of Day 3

Pakistan vs Australia Live Cricket Score, 2nd Test at Abu Dhabi Day 2

Yuvraj Singh — have we seen the last of the man who won India three World Cups?

Younis Khan continues piling up records for Pakistan

Younis Khan’s ban: why the ICC is justified

Australia Australia tour of UAE 2014 Australia vs Pakistan Australia vs Pakistan 2014 Central Zone Duleep Trophy Duleep Trophy 2014-15 India Pakistan Pakistan vs Australia Pakistan vs Australia 2014 South Zone South Zone vs Central Zone Sri Lanka Sri Lanka tour of India 2014

Pakistan 517/4 against Australia at tea on Day 2 of 2nd Test

Misbah-ul-Haq becomes fifth Test captain to score century after age of 40

Younis Khan completes 5th Test double century; Pakistan continue to dominate Australia in 2nd Test

Duleep Trophy 2014-15 final: Central Zone 214/4 at stumps; lead by 111 runs

Younis Khan completes 8,000 runs in Test cricket

Younis Khan equals Javed Miandad’s record of most 150+ scores by Pakistan batsman

India vs Sri Lanka 2014: Manish Pandey showing signs of fulfilling potential

Yuvraj Singh — have we seen the last of the man who won India three World Cups?

Younis Khan continues piling up records for Pakistan

Mythbusting — the claim that playing for a weaker batting side handicaps a batsman has no basis

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

678 Posts | 6 Fans

Video Highlights: Younis Khan century during Pakistan vs Australia 1st Test at Dubai

India A vs Sri Lanka: Fringe players look to impress

NGOs pursue education for all

Dance Basanti from Ungli: Put on your dancing shoes and practice the Basanti move!

Weight Loss Tip #59: Eat oranges to lose weight

Sensex surges 150 points in early trade to regain 27,000-mark

PricewaterhouseCoopers partners Google to offer business solutions to clients

Google X Lab working on nanoparticles to help detect diseases early

Priyanka Chopra has the best no make-up selfie on Instagram, think fans!

Lisa Haydon: I slept off midway while watching the original Shaukeen!

International programme in Animal Husbandry

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here