Mumbai Indians would address the issue of finding a replacement for injured opener Aaron Finch after Friday’s game against Chennai Super Kings in Mumbai, said captain Rohit Sharma after confirming that the Australian has been ruled out of the tournament. (Full Coverage| Fixtures|Points Table)
“Yeah, he’s out. Nothing has been decided whether we need an opener or a middle order batsman (as replacement). We are playing an important game on Friday. We wanted to focus on that. We will see about the replacement after this game,” said Rohit at the pre-game media conference at the Wankhede Stadium on Thursday.
Finch was ruled out of IPL after injuring his hamstring while going for a run during MI’s match against Rajasthan Royals in Ahmedabad.
“We are thinking about it. We have come up with some names, but nothing has been confirmed yet. We thought we needed to look at a few more options. We will check them and decide. But it has to be done quickly,” Rohit added.
Rohit also said that Harbhajan Singh, who did not play the game against Royals due to a sore neck, is fit to play Friday’s game.
“Harbhajan is looking very good,” the MI skipper said.
Asked whether West Indian Lendl Simmons would open in place of Finch, Rohit was non-committal.
“We will have a good training session and decide the best team combination for CSK game.”
Rohit indicated that he will bat at No.4 against the Super Kings, a slot he went in at against Royals after opening with Finch in the first two games.
“Looking at the balance and combination of the team it’s better for me to bat at No.4. I don’t know whether I will open the innings in the games to come. Everything depends on balance. If we get that balance right I will bat wherever I and the team feel right. Right now I feel I am better off holding myself at No.4,” said Rohit.
The scorer of two double hundreds in ODIs quickly sprang to the defense of his bowlers when it was suggested that it was the squad’s weak link.
“In the first six overs we need to bat well (too). Our focus is to bat well in the first six overs and despite batting badly we had scored 160-plus in all three games. It’s a concern. We are addressing this issue,” he said.
“We are trying to make so many changes, because we want to get that combination right. I feel once we start winning everything will fall in place.”
He predicted a good game on Friday.
“It will be a good game, it’s going to be exciting. Playing against Chennai is always good. They have won both their games. We know their strengths and weaknesses and we will do whatever is best for our team.”
He did not agree with Harbhajan Singh’s quote after their previous home game against Kings XI Punjab that MI depended on him a lot in batting.
“I don’t think any team depends on one individual player. Contributions are needed from all players. The best example is the Kolkata game (where the team lost after he got a 98 not out).”
Rohit also had encouraging words for young left-arm spin bowler Jagadeesha Suchith, who has stolen a march over the more experienced slow bowler Pragyan Ojha in the playing eleven.
“He’s very good. I had not seen much of him before IPL. I had heard a lot about him before the auction. I am very impressed with his attitude. He’s a smart cricketer,” said the MI captain.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines