Former India all-rounder Irfan Pathan feels that the Mumbai Indians (MI) will have an important player missing if they try to make their best XI from the squad they have picked. Notably, they bought eight players at the IPL 2023 auction in Kochi on Friday, December 23. They had ₹20.55 crore in their purse ahead of the auction and spent most of the amount on buying Cameron Green for ₹17.5 crores.
During a discussion on Star Sports, Pathan said: “Definitely between three-and-a-half to four. Cameron Green was an extremely good buy. I am giving one point less because you will feel one player is missing when you try to make their playing XI.”
He also feels that the five-time champions do not have a player who can bat effectively at No. 7, saying:
“You can also get Cameron Green to open and then Ishan Kishan, Rohit Sharma and Suryakumar Yadav – these four are confirmed. Tilak Varma will come at No. 5, Tim David will come at No. 6 but who will be the seventh player? Which other guy will bat here? It seems they missed out slightly there.”
“The overall team is good but I gave the rating based on the best playing XI” – Irfan Pathan
However, Mumbai Indians might look to play Ramandeep Singh at No. 7. Along with him, Arjun Tendulkar is another option as well who has done well in domestic cricket, but he has not played at this level. But Pathan also said that Rohit Sharma’s side has a well-rounded bowling attack as well. He shared:
“Other than that, your bowling is sorted. You got Piyush Chawla as a spinner. You have Jofra Archer and Jasprit Bumrah, if they remain fit then it’s the best, or else you have the option of both Behrendoff and Jhye Richardson.”
Irfan Pathan also stated that the impact player rule could work to their advantage as well. However, this rule allows the franchises to replace a player during the game with one of the pre-defined substitutes as well. However, the impact player can only be an Indian unless the team starts the match with fewer than four overseas players as well.
“Mumbai Indians’ problem might get sorted out because of the impact player that is going to come. There you can play an extra bowler at No. 7, or a batter if you have to bowl second. So the overall team is good but I gave the rating based on the best playing XI,” Irfan Pathan concluded.