"Surprised That MI Moved On From Rohit Sharma” - Wasim Jaffer Unhappy With Hardik Pandya's Appointment

Updated - 16 Dec 2023, 03:52 PM

Mumbai Indians, Hardik Pandya, Rohit Sharma

Former Indian cricketer Wasim Jaffer reacted to Mumbai Indians removing Rohit Sharma as their captain in the Indian Premier League (IPL). He was surprised by the five-time champions’ decision as he didn’t expect this to happen this early. 

Mumbai Indians on Friday (15th December) surprised many when they in a social media announcement named Hardik Pandya as their new captain. They took leadership away from Rohit Sharma, citing it as a part of the transition going ahead. 

Rohit Sharma took the leadership of the Mumbai Indians in 2013 and captained the team till 2023. He ended as the joint most successful leader in the tournament, having won 5 titles in the league along with Chennai Super Kings skipper MS Dhoni. 

Rohit Sharma no doubt made Mumbai Indians a dominating force in the IPL and to remove the batter from the captaincy suddenly didn’t go well with many. Fans didn’t welcome this decision at all as they lashed out at the team for their poor decision. 

Wasim Jaffer was also among those and believes that when Hardik Pandya was traded in to Mumbai Indians he would’ve been informed about his captaincy role. But he was unsure if management made Rohit Sharma aware of the decision or not. 

Wasim Jaffer highlighted that Mumbai Indians had other captaincy options in Suryakumar Yadav and Jasprit Bumrah and he hoped that management would’ve communicated to them as well. Speaking to ESPNCricinfo, he explained: 

“I’m surprised that MI have moved on from Rohit Sharma so early. It happened so quickly, I’m also a little surprised. When they did the trade, it was probably communicated to Hardik that he is going to come in as the captain. But whether it was communicated to Rohit, I don’t know. 

There were a couple of guys who were pretty hopeful of becoming the captain. One of them is Suryakumar Yadav, who is captaining the Indian team. He has captained really well. Jasprit Bumrah as well, he captained India in Tests. I hope it has been communicated really well. It was going to happen, but it happening straightaway this season, I am a little surprised.” 

He would have wanted the leadership to be taken away from him – Wasim Jaffer on Rohit Sharma 

Wasim Jaffer further looked at the positive side of it and stated that it could be a relief for Rohit Sharma. He highlighted two poor outings Mumbai Indians had in the last two seasons and stated that the senior opener would’ve wanted the leadership to be taken away. He elaborated:

“In a sense, it can be a little bit of a relief that you are not in that job. It’s little easier, you just focus on your batting. Knowing Rohit, sometimes the stress of captaining in the IPL has got to him. He has had a very lean couple of seasons. He would have wanted the leadership to be taken away from him, so that he can focus on his batting.” 

Rohit Sharma captained Mumbai Indians in 158 games and won 87 games out of them. He would go down as one of the best captains in the league.