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From MI to MIK - Mumbai Indians (Keepers) #IPL7PervView

by Gaurav Sethi

Why Dinesh Karthik was not retained by the Indians is a mystery – he could have been the standby wicketkeeper for the other five in the squad.

Ben Dunk(26), CM Gautam(27), Ambati Rayudu (28), Aditya Tare(26), Sushant Marathe (28) are the five keepers on board.

At 28, Karthik also falls into the favoured age grouping of MI keepers, 26-28.

But Karthik was picked by his old team, the Delhi Daredevils, who prefer buying their discards (Ross Taylor’s in too) just so that they remember why they didn’t retain them in the first place.

But this is not about Delhi and Mumbai, this is Mumbai vs. Mumbai.

As always, Mumbai’s dugout outclasses those off the bench – SRT, Kumble, John Wright, Anita Ambani and the numerous kids she will pose with.

What does MI have other than their five wicketkeepers?

Rohit Sharma. Captain. Defending Champion. Pout-face. Dot balls on top will be vital in playing out the power play without taking undue risks. Followed by a brainfade in over 6.2, batting on an accomplished 28 (26), 1 6, 3 4s. Is best suited for four, but will open. But he’s captain, should bat at four, this is not Team India.  

There’s Pragyan Ojha, who is now resigned to not playing for India again, yet again.

Ojha has played 6 T20Is – how he squeezed those many can only be attributed to Bhajji taking off for his recording duties.

He played these games between June 2009 – June 2010.

The rise of Ravindra (a.k.a Jadeja) ended whatever faint hopes Ojha might have had; and unless he can quickly acquire a tag as flash as Sir, say Menial, this could be it.

Also, ever since VVS retired, Ojha has lacked the same deranged motivation in his running.

Ojha, who should be MI’s strongest spinning link, could go missing this season.

Which leaves us with Harbhajan Singh. Yes, he’s still playing cricket.

Michael Hussey will open the batting, and I envisage, the Mathew Hayden of old (make that very old) in his last season making a guest appearance – he could also be possessed by Ponting’s last Waltz last year.

There’s Malinga, who if he’s not captaining, and not taking orders from others, will not be able to dish out Yorker-Fries outside off that even The Greatest IPL Player Of All Time, Dhoni, was unable to counter. To err is Divine.

Zaks, if he’s back from the French Riviera again, will look leaner yet again. He will play initially, and half way through the season he won’t.

Corey Anderson and Keiron Pollard of reputations so great, the IPL will bow before them.

How Corey Anderson goes will decide MI’s season, or maybe it won’t, but I think it could. He should bat no lower than four, ideally at three.

MI though, has in the past been reluctant to bat Pollard anyway higher than eight, though I recall he did come in at seven once, but had to return for a photo-shoot.

Hell, Santokie may not get a game. But Bumrah could, and with that mad-hatter action, will be the best thing for MI this season.

The Playing XI: (batting order)
1 Michael Hussey
2 Rohit Sharma
3 Corey Anderson
4 Ambati Rayudu
5 Pollard
6 Tare / Gautam / Marathe*
8 Zaks / Bumrah / Shreyas Gopal
9 Bhajji
10 Malinga
11 Ojha

*Could play away games too. 

MI won't win this season. They don't have a reason.

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