The upcoming edition of the Indian Premier League is about to kick off in four weeks. All ten franchises are gearing up for the start of the marquee event. However, ahead of the next season, the five-time IPL champion Mumbai Indians suffered a huge blow when their ace pacer Jasprit Bumrah was ruled out of the upcoming edition of the league.
Bumrah hasn’t completely recovered from his injury and will take at least 6 months more. It will be a huge blow for MI as they already had a poor outing in 2022 when they finished last in the table. Thus, the franchise will have a stiff task on their hands to pick a bowler who can be an ideal replacement for Bumrah in IPL 2023.
5 Players who can Replace Jasprit Bumrah in IPL
1. Sandeep Sharma
Veteran Indian pacer Sandeep Sharma, who is one of the few Indian pacers with 100 or more IPL games, went unsold at the auction, which came as a surprise to many. However, he might be tried by MI as Bumrah’s replacement. Sharma is known for his swing bowling and is a complete package when it comes to bowling in the powerplay. He has played 104 games and taken 114 IPL wickets at an economy rate of 7.77.
2. Dhawal Kulkarni
Veteran Mumbai pacer Dhawal Kulkarni, who spent his whole life playing cricket in Mumbai, can be another option for MI. Kulkarni is vastly experienced both at domestic and IPL levels. He made his IPL debut in 2008 for MI and has played 8 seasons for them. Kulkarni played his last IPL season until 2021 for MI. In 92 games, he has taken 86 wickets in the IPL. He was also part of the 2013 and 2020 IPL triumphs with MI.
3. Ankit Rajpoot
If MI are looking to get an Indian pacer who has already played in the high-voltage IPL environment, then Ankit Rajpoot also ticks all the boxes. The tall pacer was part of the Lucknow Super Giants in the 2022 edition but was released by the franchise ahead of the auction. He has an experience of 29 IPL games under his belt and 24 wickets to his name. Ankit has already represented CSK, KKR, PBKS, RR, and LSG in the league.
4. Varun Aaron
If you want pace options in an Indian seamer, Varun Aaron has got that zip in him. The 33-year-old pacer went unsold in the IPL 2023 auction with a base price of INR 50. He has been suffering from injuries but is now completely fit for competitive cricket. Varun brings an extra pace to the table, which can prove effective along with Jofra Archer. He has also picked up 44 wickets in 50 IPL games. He was part of the last-year champion Gujarat Titans.
5. Basil Thampi
Another pacer who has played for MI and didn’t get any buyers in the IPL auction 2023 is Basil Thampi. The 28-year-old was part of the Mumbai squad in 2022 and played five games and took five wickets. Although he didn’t have the numbers to convince, he is familiar with the franchises and players, which might help the team. MI can take a chance on him as he is a skiddy bowler, who has some IPL experience behind him. Thampi has 22 IPL wickets to his name and has played for Gujarat Lions and Sunrisers Hyderabad already.