Former India player turned veteran commentator Aakash Chopra said that the Mumbai Indians (MI) have a lot of work to do at the IPL 2023 auction as they have to fill quite a few voids in their squad as well.
The most successful franchise let go of 13 players, which also included the veteran Kieron Pollard, as part of their retention process. However, they have a remaining purse of ₹20.55 crore before going into the auction on December 23 as well.
In a video shared on his YouTube channel, Chopra added that Mumbai have plenty of work to do to make a balanced squad. He stated:
“The Mumbai Indians have ₹20.55 crore available. This team will still have to shop. They have left quite a few big players but they will have to use that money properly because they still have to fill in the blanks. They still need a lot of holes to be plugged.”
However, the former Indian opener also added that Pollard will no longer be seen in the auction as a player for the Mumbai franchise. The veteran has also said that they will have to make their seam-bowling unit formidable as well.
“You will no longer see Kieron Pollard playing in the Mumbai Indians jersey. You will see him but in the dugout as a batting coach. He is not the only one released, in fact he has bid goodbye to his IPL career, they have left 13 players. The big story is that they have let go of five fast bowlers, whether it is Tymal Mills, Daniel Sams, Basil Thampi or Jaydev Unadkat – they told all of them that they don’t need them, that they will make a fresh start,” he expressed.
“That’s a proper fast bowling pair” – Aakash Chopra on Bumrah and Archer pairing up for Mumbai Indians
However, apart from the pace bowlers, Mumbai Indians have also released Riley Meredith. Meanwhile, they acquired Jason Behrendoff from the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) as well.
Aakash Chopra also stated that England pacer Jofra Archer will be seen playing in IPL 2023, considering Mumbai Indians have retained him. He stated:
“The big story I understand is that Jofra will play. We don’t know until now if he will play or not but if they have not released him, it means Jofra is going to play. So Jofra on one side and Jasprit Bumrah, if he is fit and available, on the other. That’s a proper fast-bowling pair.”
He further shared that Mumbai Indians also need a strong middle-order batter. However, they will be looking at Tim David to play the finisher’s role and they might want to buy an experienced middle-order batter to strengthen the squad as well.
“When you let go of five fast bowlers, you go on a slight recruitment drive. I see potential and promise in the batting, which includes Dewald Brevis, Tristan Stubbs, Tilak Varma and Ramandeep [Singh], but the proven performers are not seen.”That means they will need a big player there,” Aakash Chopra concluded.