IPL 2024: Hardik Pandya replaces five-time winner Rohit Sharma as Mumbai Indians MI captain

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Image Source : GETTY Hardik Pandya is now the new Mumbai Indians captain starting IPL 2024

Mumbai Indians have made a major leadership change ahead of the 2024 edition of the IPL with Hardik Pandya being appointed as the new captain. Hardik Pandya has replaced Rohit Sharma at the helm of the joint-most successful franchise, who led Mumbai Indians to five titles in his stint as captain for 10 and a half seasons. Hardik, who led Gujarat Titans in the last two seasons, including a title in 2022 and a final berth in 2023, made a move back to the Mumbai Indians in a pre-auction trade and will continue to be the captain but for a franchise, where his IPL career began eight years ago.

Mumbai Indians Global Head of Performance, Mahela Jayawardene on the captaincy switch said “It is part of legacy building and staying true to the MI philosophy of being future-ready. Mumbai Indians have always been blessed with exceptional leadership right from Sachin to Harbhajan and Ricky to Rohit, who while contributing to the immediate success have always had an eye on strengthening the team for the future. It is in keeping with this philosophy that Hardik Pandya will assume captaincy of Mumbai Indians for the IPL 2024 season.”

Hardik will be the ninth captain of Mumbai Indians after the likes of Rohit Sharma, Harbhajan Singh, Sachin Tendulkar, Kieron Pollard and Suryakumar Yadav. Rohit, who captained MI for 158 matches across 11 seasons led the side to 87 wins including five titles.

Jayawardene thanked Rohit for his services as captain saying, “We express our gratitude to Rohit Sharma for his exceptional leadership; his tenure as the captain of the Mumbai Indians since 2013 has been nothing short of extraordinary. His leadership has brought unparalleled success to the team and solidified his place as one of the finest captains in the history of the IPL.

Under his guidance, MI became one of the most successful and loved teams ever. We will look forward to his guidance and experience on and off the field to further strengthen MI.

We welcome Hardik Pandya as the new captain of MI and wish him all the very best,” the former Sri Lanka captain further added.

Hardik led Gujarat Titans in 31 matches and led the team to 22 wins and then went on to become India’s T20 captain following the T20 World Cup 2022. Rohit and Virat Kohli haven’t played a single T20I since the T20 World Cup and this was somewhat on the expected lines given the trade happened before a mini-auction. Hardik, who is currently injured, is likely to return in the Afghanistan series in January.

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