Mumbai Indians’ regular skipper Rohit Sharma has been left out of their playing XI against Chennai Super Kings (CSK). The 34-year-old has been deemed as unfit for the game having suffered an injury at the Oval Test against England two weeks ago. He hasn’t fully recovered from that and is still carrying a niggle.
In his place, West Indian all-rounder Kieron Pollard has taken over the captaincy mantle. This isn’t the first time that Pollard has filled the role. He also led the side in a couple of matches in phase 1 because of Rohit being unfit.
Along with Rohit, Hardik Pandya was also not 100% fit so the MI side didn’t want to risk their premium players. MI’s newly added talent scout, Parthiv Patel, revealed the full reasoning behind their exclusion from the playing XI.
“As a precautionary measure, he (Hardik Pandya) isn’t added in the playing XI just like Rohit Sharma. He isn’t 100% fit and in a long tournament like IPL, can’t take risks from the very first match. 100% fit Hardik is needed for Mumbai Indians’ team balance,” Parthiv said.
The match is also a milestone game for Jasprit Bumrah. He will be playing his 100th game in the IPL and all of them have come for the Mumbai franchise. He was also given a special jersey to mark the occasion.
CSK won the toss and decided to bat first
MS Dhoni-led CSK won the toss and opted to bat first. Similar to MI, they had a couple of forced changes to their playing XI. For MI, Anmolpreet Singh is making his debut. At the toss, MI stand-in skipper Pollard revealed he was happy to lose the toss.
“We weren’t sure so, happy that I lost the toss. Rohit is okay, he’ll be fine sooner rather than later, I’m just the captain for today. We started a couple of months back, and we were just starting to build the momentum with a couple of wins,” Pollard said.
The second leg of the IPL will be played from September 19 – October 15 in the UAE.