IPL 2021: Mumbai Indians (MI) is the most successful franchise in the Indian Premier League (IPL). The Rohit Sharma-led side has won as many as five IPL titles, which is the most by any side in the history of the tournament.
The main reason behind the success of the franchise is their trust in their core players. They have always backed their main players irrespective of their performances in the match.
For the upcoming season, the franchise added backup players (on auction day) and bought 7 players, including Arjun Tendulkar. The son of India legend Sachin Tendulkar, Arjun is a pacer who can also contribute with the bat.
Apart from him, the five-time IPL Champions bought Adam Milne, Nathan Coulter-Nile, James Neesham, Marco Jansen, Yudhvir Singh and Piyush Chawla. Only a few of them are likely to feature in the playing XI as MI have always backed regulars and given long rope to the struggling players as well.
The 14th edition of the lucrative league starts on April 9, with MI facing Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the season opener. Before MI begin the IPL 2021 journey, let’s have a look at their best playing XI for the forthcoming season.
Openers: Quinton de Kock & Rohit Sharma
No doubts here. The opening duo of Rohit Sharma and Quinton de Kock has done miracles for Mumbai Indians in the past 2 years and once again, they will kick off the proceedings.
Whether it is a T20 game, ODI, or a Test match, Rohit Sharma has proved himself as one of the best openers. After IPL 2020, Rohit Sharma has played some good knocks at the opening position.
Quinton de Kock, on the other hand is the best wicket-keeper batsman for Mumbai. In IPL 2020, he accumulated 332 runs in 12 matches with 3 fifties to his name. In IPL 2020, he was the 6th highest run-scorer with 503 runs in 16 matches. He also had a strike rate of 140+ which is a good start for an opener.
Middle-Order: Ishan Kishan & Surya Kumar Yadav
Again, no doubts. Suryakumar Yadav has been MI’s go-to batsman since rejoining the side and will continue to hold his place. He played 16 games in IPL 2020 and remained the 7th most run-getter in the tournament. He accumulated 480 runs in 15 innings at an average of 40. At the middle-order spot, Suryakumar Yadav is the most dependable batsman for Mumbai Indians. He has the ability to handle the batting when openers fail to score.
Ishan, on the other hand was the highest run-scorer for his side in IPL 2020. He accumulated 516 runs from 14 games at an impressive average of 57, with 99 being his best. The left-handed batsman smashed 30 sixes in IPL 2020, most by any batsman in the league. Ishan Kishan will be a great option for Mumbai Indians at the middle-order.
All-rounders: Kieron Pollard & Krunal Pandya
Krunal Pandya has been sensational for the men in blue as he provides Rohit Sharma a plethora of bowling options. He is never out of the game and makes sure that he contributes in the field. Before questioning his batting skills, one must look at the damage he has done in the 2nd ODI against England in Pune. Talking about his batting record in previous season, Krunal scored 109 in 16 games at a strike-rate of 118.
Without any doubt, Pollard is the backbone of Mumbai Indians and the team management has always shown immense faith in his ability. He also led Mumbai in few games. As we speak of ability, Pollard has scored 3023 runs with a strike rate of 149.87. Also, he has the highest score of 83, which is exceptional for someone who bats down the order. So Kieron Pollard is the best option at the lower-middle order position.
Finisher: Hardik Pandya
Hardik Pandya did bowl for India in the T20I series against England, however, he refrainedl from bowling consistently in the recently concluded ODI series, which indicates that his main focus is the upcoming T20 World Cup. This means that he might not contribute with the bowl in the upcoming season of the Indian Premier League and hence he will be playing a role of finisher in Mumbai Indians.
Despite staying away from bowling, Pandya played a crucial role last year by scoring 281 runs, batting at a strike-rate of 178.98. His ability to hit long shots and superb strike rate helps the team to rise their run-rate during the death overs. So Hardik Pandya is a must addition player in Mumbai’s playing 11.
Bowlers: Trent Boult, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Jasprit Bumrah, Rahul Chahar
MI’s bowling has been quite remarkable over the years, and that’s one of the major reasons this franchise has won maximum IPL titles.
The new ball duo of Jasprit Bumrah and Trent Boult made batsmen dance to their bowling last year and this pair will continue to do so this year. While Bumrah scalped 27 wickets last year. Boult, on the other hand had 25 dismissals to his name.
Nathan Coulter-Nile will be another pacer that Mumbai Indians will need in the upcoming season. Coulter Nile has been a part of the IPL since 2013. And, apart from his bowling abilities, he can contribute with the bat too! However, with a strong batting lineup, the Mumbai Indians did not require the services of Coulter Nile. This time, he should be picked in the team as he is the best tailender at the moment.
Rahul Chahar has emerged as a great spin bowler for Mumbai Indians. Last season, he was the third-highest wicket-taker for Mumbai in IPL 2020. Chahar picked up 15 scalps from 15 matches, with 2/18 being his best. He is among the best full-time spinner for Mumbai Indians. The team now also has Piyush Chawla in the squad, but for the first match, Rahul Chahar will be a better option.
Mumbai Indians’ Best Playing XI For IPL 2021
Rohit Sharma (Captain), Quinton de Kock (WK), Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard, Krunal Pandya, Jasprit Bumrah, Trent Boult, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Rahul Chahar