Mumbai Indians played some outstanding cricket in IPL 2015, emerging triumphant and defeating Chennai Super Kings in the final. Mumbai will be keen to win IPL 2016, which starts Saturday, and become the first team in the competition's history to win the title three times since its inception in 2008.
Mumbai Indians have the required ammunition to fire them to their third title as they have a balanced team with some explosive batsmen, great bowlers, and quality all-rounders. Mumbai Indians retained most of the players from last season hence they were not much busy during the auction, but they did sign some key players like Jos Buttler and Tim Southee to bolster their team for the ninth edition of the IPL.
Here is a complete look at their team
Batsmen: With batsmen such as Rohit Sharma, Lendl, Simmons, Unmukt Chand and Ambati Rayudu, they have a right mix of India and foreign batsmen, who can play an important role for their team. Rohit has been magnificent for Mumbai in the last couple of season.
Rohit, who will not only open the innings for Mumbai, is the skipper as well, and will be looking to provide solid start for his team. Simmons will be keen to continue his impressive run as he was the highest scorer for them last season, scoring 540 runs. Rayudu and Chand will need to get their act right when the opener fails to get their act right.
Bowlers: Mumbai have a strong bowling line up with Lasith Malinga, Jasprit Bumrah, Mitchell McClenaghan and Tim Southee as star pacers. Mumbai have a problem of plenty as it seems, so it remains to be seen, who will be picked in the starting eleven.
However one player, who is sure to feature for Mumbai is experienced campaigner, Harbhajan Singh, who has taken 110 IPL career wicket so far. Harbhajan knows the conditions well, and will not only look to take wickets, but also contain the batsmen. Jagadeesha Suchith, who managed to take 10 wickets for Mumbai Indians last season, could play as their second spinner.
All-rounders: It is at this juncture where Mumbai Indians prosper as they possess some of the best all-rounders in the game. Kieron Pollard, Corey Anderson and Hardik Pandya are going to play an integral role with both the bat and ball.
The trio, with their willow, can hit those massive sixes with ridiculous ease. Pollard, Anderson and Pandya need to shine for Mumbai in the latter stages of the innings when runs are required to be scored at a brisk rate. Not to forget, these all-rounders with their gentle medium, can take wickets with the white cherry in their hand as well.
Wicket-keepers: Jos Buttler and Parthiv Patel are Mumbai's two regular glovemen for IPL 2016. Buttler has been one of the best players for England in coloured clothing, and his recent exploits with the bat in the World T20 has further enhanced his reputation as a dangerous hitter of a cricketer ball.
Buttler, who is making his IPL debut this season, will be trying to make an impression in 2016. Patel, on the other hand, has played in all the editions of the IPL, and is an experienced campaigner, but he might have to sit out. However, he could played as a regular batsman in the team as well.
Overall, the team looks balanced, but they need their star players like Rohit, Simmons, Pollard, Harbhajan , Buttler and Malinga to fire. If these players get going in the IPL, they will be difficult to beat in the competition. Having said that they also need players such as Pandya, Rayudu and Suchitch to deliver every now and then for then as Mumbai cannot depend on the same players every time.
Complete squad for Mumbai Indians
Rohit Sharma (C), Lendl Simmons, Ambati Rayudu, Corey Anderson, Unmukt Chand, Kieron Pollard, Parthiv Patel, Mitchell McClenaghan, Lasith Malinga, Marchant de Lange, Akshay Wakhare, Harbhajan Singh, Hardik Pandya, Jagadeesha Suchitch, Jasprit Bumrah, Nitish Rana, R Vinay Kumar, Shreyas Gopal, Siddhesh Lad, Jos Buttler, Nathu Singh, Tim Southee, Krunal Pandya, KP Kamath, Jitesh Sharma and Deepak Punia.