The forthcoming IPL season has witnessed many surprises packed with unexpected twists. While Hardik Pandya’s trade with Mumbai Indians was one such turn in the story that enthralled fans. After returning to the franchise, Hardik replaces Rohit as MI captain within less than a month, adding another intriguing twist to the story.
It was an astonishing move from the Mumbai Indians to replace one of the successful captains in the IPL. As a result, Rohit’s tenure of 10-year captaincy concludes ahead of the IPL’s 17th edition.
Shockingly, instead of receiving praise, the majority of the fans were unwilling to congratulate Hardik Pandya.
As Hardik replaces Rohit as MI captain, Netizens, as well as Hitman’s fans, showered their furious reaction on “X”. Within 1 hour, the franchise’s official page on the social platform unexpectedly lost its 400k followers.
Similarly, within 24 hours, Mumbai Indians lost its 600K followers on “Instagram”. Interestingly, the franchise had huge followers on social media behind Chennai Super Kings.
Also, many fans cursed that the franchise was on the verge of losing its top brand endorsement. Additionally, the Mumbai Indians fans burnt its flags along with jerseys and caps within a short time of the announcement.
Regardless of the fresh strategy implemented by the franchise to replace their 5-time winning skipper, fans reacted with multifarious captions and trolls on various social media platforms such as:
“No ROHIT SHARMA! No MUMBAI INDIANS!!!”
“ HITMAN- The History of Mumbai Indians!!!”
“HARDIK replaces Rohit as MI captain- Team’s future in jeopardy!!!”
Despite Mumbai Indians posting an emotional tribute video thanking Rohit Sharma for his brilliant contribution, the trolls and diverse captions tend to continue.
Why fans are not satisfied with the franchise decision?
With an untouched strategic move by the franchise, Hardik replaces Rohit as MI captain which makes netizens declare it an unfair decision.
Rohit Sharma took over the captaincy from Ricky Ponting in 2013. The former Australian skipper’s faltering batting scores eventually paved the opportunity for Hitman.
As a debutant captain, Rohit Sharma led his team successfully to the maiden IPL trophy, thereby providing a grand farewell to Sachin Tendulkar.
Out of 158 IPL matches, Rohit Sharma as a captain achieved 87 wins for his franchise. Surprisingly, MS Dhoni stands second on the list with 82 wins, despite having a longer captaincy tenure in the IPL.
Importantly, Mumbai Indians under Rohit’s leadership became the first franchise to clinch the IPL trophy for the 5th time.
Later, MS Dhoni tallied Rohit Sharma’s record by defeating Gujarat Titans in the previous IPL season finals.
Moreover, 5 out of 5 finals Mumbai Indians won under Rohit’s captaincy in the years 2013,2015,2017,2019 and 2020. Contrarily, the former Gujarat Titans skipper Hardik Pandya has won only a maiden trophy for his side out of the two IPL finals.
Ab De Villers shares his opinion as Hardik Replaces Rohit as MI captain:
Former South African skipper Ab De Villers explains that a majority of fans took it personally.
The South African “Mr 360 batsman”, specifically indicates that probably it might have been a self-strategic decision from Rohit Sharma.
According to ABD, the Indian skipper might have pressured himself to achieve fantastic success. Perhaps, the rest might refresh the Hitman’s batting skills to perform well in international matches.
Furthermore, ABD feels that it’s Rohit Sharma’s time to enjoy himself as a player and transfer the pressure to other experienced skippers.
Crucial Reasons why Hardik Replaces Rohit as MI captain
Ahead of the IPL 2024 mini-auction in Dubai on 19th December 2023, the franchise faces several criticisms.
It is logically proven that no franchise in the world would spend INR 15 crores to acquire the services of an all-rounder. Probably, the reason for sealing Hardik’s deal for a whopping amount was to groom the future skipper of the Mumbai Indians.
Here are the crucial reasons why Hardik replaces Rohit as MI Captain:
1. Uncertain of Hitman’s Future:
After losing the World Cup 2023 finals, the uncertainty of Hitman’s future was intensified. Rohit Sharma, 36 years old, is approaching the twilight period of his career.
Probably, the veteran opener could continue up to 3 to 4 years of his cricketing career. As a batsman, Rohit Sharma can make a significant contribution to his team and enjoy batting with full-fledged freedom.
2. Future goals of winning the ICC Trophies:
Excluding his age factors, Rohit Sharma has set his vision and future goals of winning ICC Trophies – The World Test Championship and Champions Trophy in the year 2025.
3. Hardik Pandya’s proven leadership:
Perhaps, the change in captaincy might provide a smooth transition with Hardik Pandya’s proven leadership skills. Although the Indian all-rounder hasn’t surpassed the Hitman’s captaincy records, nevertheless he could prove to be Rohit’s successor.
Earlier, Hardik Pandya successfully led Team India in the T20I series during Rohit’s absence.
Interestingly, Hardik Pandya with a short captaincy tenure in T20Is, has a winning percentage of 62.50. Notably, out of 10 matches, Hardik secured 10 wins and 5 losses including a tied game. Overall, if Mumbai Indians succeed with their strategy by lifting the upcoming season’s IPL trophy, Hardik Pandya could become Team India’s new white ball skipper after Rohit Sharma’s retirement