Hardik Pandya
Hardik Pandya. Image-PTI

Mumbai Indians opener, Chris Lynn said that Hardik Pandya had shoulder discomfort and hence didn’t bowl in their loss in the season opener on Friday against Royal Challengers Bangalore. While Pandya did bowl recently against England, Chris Lynn reckons Mumbai is being proactive in handling the seamer’s injury as it is a long tournament.

RCB chased down the target of 160 on the last ball of the match to seal a thriller. Chris Lynn, who was Mumbai’s highest scorer with 49 runs off 35 balls in Quinton de Kock’s unavailability, admitted that not having a 6th bowling option of Hardik did hurt the team as Glenn Maxwell took the attack to Krunal Pandya and Rahul Chahar, on the slow, and sticky wicket, where MI could have benefitted with Hardik’s slower balls.

Hardik didn’t bowl a single ball last season and had just resumed his bowling in the matches against England. Post the IPL, India has a Test series in England and a T20 World Cup. Considering the two major assignments, Pandya’s bowling workload will be managed in the IPL.

Hardik Pandya
Hardik Pandya [Image-Getty]

“I’m not a hundred percent sure but it’s a bit of a shoulder niggle. I think Hardik Pandya not bowling is maybe more precautionary. He’s played a fair bit of cricket leading up to this tournament, in which he has to play (minimum) 14 games as well.

“So you don’t want to throw your eggs in one basket and risk injury. The physios and the staff doctors will treat Hardik if there’s something wrong,” Chris Lynn said.

“He (Hardik Pandya) is a huge factor with the bat but if he gets bowling, then it adds another dimension to the team. We might have been missing the sixth bowler tonight but it’s early stages in the tournament. I do believe if Hardik is bowling then it brings out confidence in his batting as well. So fingers crossed we’ll see him with the ball sooner rather than later,” Chris Lynn added.

We’re going to have to adapt to this Chennai wicket: Chris Lynn

The 31-year-old right-hander believes that Mumbai needs to adapt quickly to the pitch at Chepauk, where they will play 4 more matches, and batting there is going to get difficult as the tournament progresses.

Chris Lynn for MI (Photo- IPL)
Chris Lynn for MI (Photo- IPL)

It is also to be seen if MI brings back de Kock to replace Chris Lynn after his impressive performance on Friday; the Australian warmed the bench for the entire season last year as the South African was preferred over him. They face Kolkata Knight Riders on Tuesday.

“We’re going to have to adapt to this Chennai wicket. It’s going to be challenging and tricky from a batting point of view but we’ve got four more games here to get it right,” Chris Lynn further stated.

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