Hardik Pandya and Rohit Sharma
Hardik Pandya and Rohit Sharma. Image Credit: X

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Mumbai Indians finish the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 at the bottom position, winning four of their 14 fixtures at a net run rate (NRR) of -0.318. Speculations have already started to grow on whether the team management will retain their former captain, Rohit Sharma, in the upcoming 18th season of the tournament.

The India captain was removed from the franchises’ captaincy position, as they traded their former all-rounder Hardik Pandya from the Gujarat Titans (GT) and appointed him their leader for his edition of the competition.

Hardik too didn’t finish the tournament well in his performances with both bat and ball, besides getting booed by the Mumbai Indians fans in various grounds, especially their home the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.

‘Rohit Sharma has played his last match for the Mumbai Indians’ – Aakash Chopra

The former India opener, Akash Chopra picks up his options for the retention of the Mumbai Indians for the next season, and he doesn’t feel that the ‘Blue Brigade’ will retain Rohit Sharma before the IPL 2025 auction.

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The right-hand opener, Rohit Sharma finished season as the highest run-getter for the five-time champions, with 417 runs in 14 innings at an average of 32.07 and a strike rate of 150, shouldering on one fifty, and a century he celebrated against the Chennai Super Kings (CSK).

In a video, he shared on his YouTube channel, Chopra points out that both Rohit Sharma and Ishan Kishan won’t get retained by the franchise.

“I think they will let Ishan Kishan go. They might use the ‘Right to Match’ card because 15.5 crores is just too much money. I don’t think Ishan will be retained,” former India batter Aakash Chopra opined on his YouTube channel. “I think Rohit Sharma has played his last match for the Mumbai Indians, whether he doesn’t want to be retained or the franchise lets him go.”

Ishan Kishan nailed 320 runs for MI in this season, in 14 innings at an average of 22.85 and a strike rate of 148.83, with only one half-century besides his name.

“Either way, I see them parting ways. I don’t think you will be seeing Rohit Sharma in the Mumbai Indians jersey again. That’s just my understanding,” the renowned commentator expressed. “I might be wrong but I feel, either way, Rohit Sharma will not be playing for the Mumbai Indians when you start the next season.”

Mumbai earned the services of the wicket-keeper batter, after buying him for a price of INR 15.25 crore during the IPL 2022 auction.

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The Delhi-born feels that Mumbai should go with Jasprit Bumrah as their first retention name, while Suryakumar Yadav will be their second. The former finish the season with 20 wickets at an economy of only 6.48, while Sky nailed up 345 runs at a strike rate of nearly 170.

“I feel the first retention will be Suryakumar Yadav. I am not saying first or second but this team will 100% want to retain Suryakumar Yadav,” the veteran remarked in the same video. “The second player, I feel you want to 100% retain Jasprit Bumrah. Bumrah might be the first retention and Suryakumar Yadav might be the second retention. These two players are absolutely confirmed.”

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He also predicts that Hardik Pandya will stay with the team, given he has been a integral part of the team’s blueprint going forward, while young Tilak Verma, who finish the season with 416 runs at a strike rate of almost 150, should come as their fourth retention.

“The third, I would say Hardik Pandya. You need Hardik Pandya because it wasn’t a short-term investment,” Chopra concluded. “I feel the fourth should be Tilak Varma. All four are Indians thus far. I don’t think this team will want to or will be able to retain any overseas player.”

Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) became the champions of the IPL 2024 season, to lift their third trophy in the history of the competition.