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Watch: Zaheer Khan Explains Reasoning Behind Mumbai Indians’ Retentions

Record five times Indian Premier League (IPL) champions, Mumbai Indians (MI) had some of the toughest calls to make in the retentions on tuesday. With stars in all departments, MI had to let go of some big names like Hardik Pandya, Ishan Kishan, Trent Boult, among others, as they decided to retain captain Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Suryakumar Yadav and Kieron Pollard. MI’s director of cricket operations, Zaheer Khan, later spoke to Star Sports to discuss the reasoning behind the franchise’s retention decisions.

Asked if keeping Rohit and Bumrah was a no-brainer, he replied, “You don’t have to think much about it (to keep them).”

Zaheer added that leadership qualities play an important factor in retaining players.

“There are leaders in the team who have been there for many years – and you can include Pollard in that. Pollard’s journey with MI began in 2010 and now he is considered a strong finisher in this format. So, from that point of view “It was not a difficult decision either,” he said.

“If you look at the retention list of Mumbai Indians, you will notice that there are leaders who have performed consistently. Yes, we had to say goodbye to the other players with a very heavy heart. Overall, it was very difficult to take these decisions, ”he explained.

When asked why Suryakumar Yadav was chosen in place of people like Hardik Pandya, Ishan Kishan among others, Zaheer replied: “I always said he is a player with high potential.”


The huge Indian pace indicated that MI would try to bring back some of the released players in the mega auction.

“We had discussions about all the names, not just the three or four names you mentioned. Rahul Chahar also did very well with us.

“The big names you mentioned – Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Hardik Pandya, Rahul Chahar, Krunal Pandya – that list is very long. We talked about everyone. The way we had to move forward and the way we got the players could bring back. that has long been associated with us, we also discussed it. “

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