Interview of Cricket Fans – 142 – Mumbai Indians
J – Thank you for your participation in this interview, firstly tell us a bit about yourself as a cricket fan.
Thank you for this opportunity, I am delighted to share my experience as an ardent fan of Rohit Sharma and Mumbai Indians. I hope you’ll have a good read.
Belonging to a family who is an avid partisan of football, Rasika Patil a young middle school student encountered an inclination for cricket a few years ago. For a cricket loyalist like me, it is more than just a game as it teaches you cognizance of “work on your X factor and be the best version of it”, Discipline and teamwork. From having finite deets about cricket to reading articles on cricket fielding positions, batting and bowling techniques, watching match highlights of my favourite Cricketer and success stories of cricketers worldwide, my journey as a cricket fan has been a frisson of excitement.
J – What is your earliest memory of Rohit Sharma and what made you a fan of ‘The Hitman’?
In 2013, I espied his batting for the first time when my dad insisted me to watch the 7th ODI against Australia where he scored a double hundred and I was in awe of his batting. But the obsession as a fan intensified after his 137(126) knock against Bangladesh in the second Quarterfinal of ICC WC 2015. “Evoked the memory of his square drive to Mashrafe Murtaza”. Rohit Sharma, the flamboyant batsman who is famed as the Hitman for his explosive batting, is currently the best white-ball opener and one of the best cricketers in the world. He is widely known for his aficionado for pull shots but I admire his square cuts and scoop shots equally.
J – Talk us through the growth of Rohit Sharma – the captain, as soon as he received the role of captaincy.
Before joining MI, Rohit was the Vice-Captain of Deccan Chargers. This spry talented batsman was also possessing a prodigy of flawless leadership qualities at a very young age. His captaincy calibre was revealed in the year 2013 when he accepted the responsibility from Ricky Ponting. Rohit is not only a captain but he is a leader. He backs budding tenderfoots in the team, trusts experienced players and believes in teamwork.
Many instances have shown his Captaincy brilliance. Few of them are –
2017 final: Rohit + Mitchell Johnson decided to not give pace to Steve smith and made Johnson bowl against the wind.
2019 final: Rohit backed Malinga to defend 9 off the last over. Malinga was expensive in that match, but Rohit trusted his experience.
2020 final: Strategic move by Rohit to include Jayant Yadav a right-arm off-spinner for 4 left-handed batters of DC and NCN in place of James Pattinson. Jayant dismissed Shikhar, NCN dismissed Rishab Pant and Axar Patel.
J – With the bat, Rohit Sharma has scores of 333, 286, 405, and 332 in the 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 seasons respectively. While these numbers aren’t bad, but they aren’t great either, if you compare them with other openers. Do you feel he will have a terrific season this time around?
The record of having most Man of the Match by an Indian speaks up for the Impact he possesses. Rohit in the mentioned period has scored second-most runs and joint-most fifties for Mumbai Indians. He is in his rough patch which every player goes through. If the impact is executed at optimum level then Hitman would rewrite the record books.
J – Out of all the five IPL Cups that MI have in their cabinet, which is the one season that they really had to work hard for the trophy?
Straight off, it is the “fiasco to glory” year 2015. MI faced a futile start in the year 2015 with losing 5 out of the first 6 games but counting in Mitchell McClenaghan in the squad turned out to be a fortunate inclusion for the team. MI revamped its flop condition in fine fettle with its fierce batting, leadership, excellent fielding and outstanding bowling combinations like Malinga-McClenaghan, Harbhajan-Suchith that overmastered the opposition. Rohit Sharma’s magnificent batting against KKR and the half-century in the finals against CSK deserves special mention. MI ended up winning their 2nd IPL title even after stumbling blocks at the beginning of the season.
J – Which is that one team that you fear the most whenever MI play in the IPL?
Mumbai Indians are seen in the back seat against Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad. Trios like Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer and David Warner, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar, Rashid Khan have proved to be snag for MI on numerous occasions.
J – They seem to be invincible on the field especially the last two seasons, but is there any weakness that you see in the current MI unit or is there anything particular that you would like to see MI improve in the future?
Mumbai Indians lack experience in the spin department. With the inclusion of Piyush Chawla, we shall expect improvement in that area. Though Rohit is the most successful Captain, his fans would love to see him multiply the team’s efficacy with the bat in every match.
J – The two players from your franchise that have contributed a lot in the past couple of seasons are no longer uncapped players (Suryakumar Yadav and Ishan Kishan), and therefore MI won’t be able to retain all of their key players in the mega auction, your thoughts?
Mumbai Indians have always counted on the belief of #OneFamily so, the thought of SKY and Ishan Kishan decamping gets me sensitive. I am extremely happy to see them play match-winning Knocks for the country. As an optimistic person and the trust in MI management, I believe one of them will join us again in the mega auction. Mumbai
Indian’s talent scouting program “Youth first policy” is determined to scout young potential talents every season. So, looking forward to seeing budding players uniting with
our #OneFamily and getting groomed, not just for Mumbai Indians but for the Indian Cricket team.
J – What is your all-time MI XI?
Rohit Sharma ( C )
Ishan Kishan (WK)