Former Indian cricketer Irfan Pathan praised Rohit Sharma for organizing his troops well despite losing some of the key players.
Rohit also received plaudits for the way he led his team in IPL 2023 because no one really counted the five-time champions as favorites in the competition after a shaky start. A sizzling maiden five-wicket haul from Akash Madhwal (5/5), a collection of shocking batting cameos along with an electric fielding performance helped the Mumbai Indians beat Lucknow Super Giants by 81 runs in the Eliminator and cross to IPL 2023 Qualifier 2.
Shocking attacking cameos from Cameron Green (41 of 23), Suryakumar Yadav (33 of 20), Tilak Varma (26 of 22) and impact player Nehal Wadhera (23 of 12) propelled Mumbai Indians to a competitive 182/8.
Akash Madhwal then took center stage on the big stage with a lethal 5/5 spell to break LSG’s batting order as the Krunal Pandya-led team succumbed under the pressure of being put out for 101, which included three runs.
Speaking on Star Sports’ Cricket Live, Irfan Pathan said: “Rohit Sharma has once again delivered for the Mumbai Indians. He faced a crisis at the start of the competition when key pacer Jasprit Bumrah was out. Jofra Archer struggled with his form and fitness, but this captain led his troops well. He first guided MI to the playoffs and then led his team to the Qualifiers with his shrewd captaincy.”
The stage is set for the highly anticipated Qualifier 2 in IPL 2023 after Mumbai Indians booked the seat with their comprehensive win over Lucknow Super Giants in Eliminator.
The five-time IPL champions will take on the defending champions in the penultimate match of this season. Both teams that are lined up with potential match winners will be eager to win and prepare for the pinnacle clash with Chennai Super Kings on Sunday (May 26).
Former India cricketer Harbhajan Singh stated that Mumbai Indians are such a force in this tournament because of a captain like Rohit who is very accessible as a skipper.
“Rohit Sharma is a very laid back captain. He is a very accessible captain even for the youngsters. He never has that ego and the youngsters can reach him at any time. He loves to spend time with players without limit. He is someone who has no “Se success has gone to his head, he is very humble and shows a lot of respect for older players. This humility makes Rohit a great player,” said Harbhajan Singh.
Gujarat Titans lost to Chennai Super Kings in the first Qualifier, but they will reach their stronghold in Ahmedabad for the second Qualifier. Harbhajan Singh believes that the presence of Indian leader Mohammed Shami makes GT a tough opponent even for a team like MI.
“Mohd Shami is a bowler that every team seems to have. He is a good new bowler. He nails York’s rapids in death overs. He has a brilliant position and becomes an unplayable bowler when there is swing Harbhajan added.
Harbhajan Singh also praised Afghanistan star Rashid Khan for his all-round performance in IPL 2023.
“Rashid Khan is a player from a different league. He is picking up wickets in heaps, he is scoring runs, he is a gun fielder and he led GT when captain Hardik was unavailable. He has done it all and excelled. GT is exceptionally lucky to have a player like Rashid in their ranks”.
Former Australian cricketer Aaron Finch also praised “world class” bowler Rashid Khan and captain Hardik Pandya for using their resources to perfection.
“GT is a strong team to beat because they have a world class bowler in Rashid Khan. They have a good captain in Hardik Pandya who has shown a lot of maturity. Thirdly, their fast bowling attack is also balanced,” he said Aaron Finch. .