Mumbai Indians skipper Rohit Sharma has made it clear that there are no fitness issues with the all-rounder Hardik Pandya and he has missed the last couple of games of IPL 2020 just because the management wanted to give him a bit of a break.
It was not too long ago that Pandya had gone through a back surgery and he has not been bowling at all after the surgery. So, when he was kept out of the last two group games of Mumbai Indians, the fans were wondering if he had sustained any injury again.
But, Rohit Sharma ruled it out in the post match press conference yesterday after Mumbai’s 10-wicket defeat at the hands of Sunrisers Hyderabad which saw Hyderabad make their way to the playoffs.
“Fitness-wise he is fine. We just wanted to give him a break and give the other guys some opportunities but I am sure he will be ready for the playoffs,” Rohit was quoted as saying when asked about Hardik in the post match press conference.
For Mumbai, it was a dead rubber, so the defeat didn’t matter much for them as they still finished the league stage at the top of the points table with as many as 18 points.
Hardik Pandya was not the only player Mumbai Indians rested for the game against SRH, Trent Boult and Jasprit Bumrah were rested as well who had been two of the key bowlers of Mumbai right through the tournament.
It was always believed that the Mumbai bowling attack would not be as penetrative in the absence of Boult and Bumrah as it normally is, but nobody had expected them to let SRH chase down the target of 150 without losing a single wicket and that too when there were still two overseas fast bowlers in the line-up even though Boult and Bumrah were not there.
It was a disappointing performance by the entire bowling unit ahead of the first qualifier on Thursday. In Rohit’s words, it was Mumbai’s worst performance of the season.