edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) is here and so is another near-invincible
looking Mumbai Indians outfit. It’s difficult to pick a weakness in that team –
they have the most well-rounded squad, with frightening depth for each position,
and are led by the most successful skipper in the tournament’s history. The
Rohit Sharma-led side will be gunning for a record-extending sixth IPL title this
year and become the first-ever team to win it thrice in a row.

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Singling out
key players from a team that has evolved into functioning like one is easier
said than done, and perhaps not fair for all the other contributors. That said,
there are always some that stand out on the long run.

Ahead of Mumbai’s tournament-opening clash against the Royal Challengers Bangalore on April 9, here is a look some exceptional talents in blue and gold:

1. Ishan Kishan

23-year-old southpaw rubber-stamped his authority on the IPL and the national team
with a sparkling run of form in since late last year. Finished as the highest
run-scorer (516) for Mumbai Indians, and with the highest number of sixes in
the tournament (30) in IPL 2020.

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2. Suryakumar Yadav

A bit of a
late-bloomer, SKY has the temperament and elegance of a classic stroke player, combined
with the ingenuity and fence-clearing ability akin to more contemporary times. The
30-year-old was crucial in Mumbai’s run to the title, finishing as the third-highest
run scorer for the side with 480 runs.

3. Hardik Pandya

From the
rare breed of fast-bowling Indian all-rounders, Pandya provides the muscle down
the order as well as some handy, street-smart bowling to make for one blockbuster
package for this action-packed format. The 27-year-old had the third-highest
strike rate in the tournament last year (178.98), while scoring 281 runs at an average of 35.12.

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4. Jasprit Bumrah

pace spearhead makes for one daunting prospect for opposition openers to start
their innings against. Bumrah finished last season with as the Purple cap
runner-up with 27 wickets at a tournament-best average of 14.96. If his fiery pace
doesn’t kill you, his variations will.

5. Trent Boult

The other
component of the champions’ pace duo, the Kiwi is a master exponent of swing
bowling. Finishing as the third-highest wicket-taker last season, with 25,
Boult is just the kind of no-nonsense, potent performer every captain dream of.