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Mumbai Indians great stepped down as captain ahead of IPL 2024 MS Dhoni-esque move from Rohit Sharma?

Rohit Sharma brought the curtains down on the most defining element of his cricket career — the captaincy of Mumbai Indians. He has handed over the leadership duties to Hardik Pandya but will carry on as a player for the five-time IPL champions. The leadership change happened less than a month after Mumbai Indians re-signed Hardik Pandya, who had guided Gujarat Titans to a title and a runner-up finish in consecutive seasons. Mumbai stated that their choice was made to ensure that they are prepared for the future.

The news may come as a surprise to some, but Mumbai had a strategic plan when they transferred Hardik from the Titans. The franchise had initially selected Hardik as Rohit’s successor, aiming for a seamless transition, much like their previous handovers from Sachin Tendulkar to Harbhajan Singh and later from Ricky Ponting to Rohit.


Rohit Sharma’s tenure as the captain of Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League (IPL) is a narrative of exceptional leadership and strategic acumen that has led the team to unparalleled success. His journey with Mumbai Indians began when he took over the reins from Ricky Ponting mid-season in 2013, marking the start of a new era for the franchise. Under his captaincy, Mumbai Indians clinched their first-ever IPL title that same year.

Rohit, who took charge of MI midway in 2013, led the Indian team to the final of the World Cup 2023 and won the Asia Cup 2023. But the 36-year-old man’s deep connection with his franchise has probably outshone all his international achievements.

The hallmark of Rohit’s leadership has been his ability to remain calm under pressure and make composed decisions, which has translated into consistent performances on the field. His tactical skills were evident as he led Mumbai Indians to additional IPL titles in 2013, 2015, 2017, 2019, and 2020, making them the most successful team in the league’s history. With five IPL trophies to his name as captain, Rohit Sharma shares the record for the most title wins with another cricketing legend, MS Dhoni.

Rohit’s approachable nature and focus on team cohesion have been key factors contributing to his success as a leader. He has been known to create a positive environment that allows players to excel, fostering a culture of excellence within the team.


Reflecting on the precedent set by legends like Sachin Tendulkar and Rohit himself, the torchbearer of Mumbai Indians, this transition signifies a pivotal moment in the team’s history. Rohit’s mentorship, honed through years of leading by example, now extends to empowering the next generation, epitomized by his camaraderie and bond with Hardik Pandya.

The blueprint for this seamless shift draws inspiration from the cricketing chronicles of the past, notably the graceful baton passage between MS Dhoni and Virat Kohli in the Indian cricketing landscape. Dhoni’s unwavering presence and mentorship, even while playing under Kohli’s captaincy, showcased the Guru-Shishya dynamics, a blueprint for the evolution of leadership within a team.

In Rohit’s case, the impending transition holds the promise of continuity infused with innovation. Hardik Pandya’s ascendancy to the helm is not just a change in leadership; it embodies the fusion of experience and youthful exuberance. Rohit Sharma, with his wealth of knowledge and experience, stands as the linchpin in ensuring a seamless passage, nurturing Hardik’s leadership aspirations while remaining an influential presence on the field.


As the stalwart of Mumbai Indians, Rohit Sharma, gracefully steps into a new phase of his cricketing journey, his role in ensuring a seamless handover of the captaincy to Hardik Pandya resonates with the essence of leadership evolution. At 36, Rohit stands at the crossroads of an illustrious career, contemplating his continued journey in T20Is while embracing the responsibility of fostering a smooth transition within his beloved franchise.

For Rohit, now it is time to relax and maybe just focus on India’s captaincy as the IPL can take a lot out of you, and he will have led India in a 5 Test-match series against England just before the next edition kicks in a little before that. With the burden of MI captaincy gone, Rohit may now look to lead India in the T20 World Cup 2024 in the West Indies and the US and fulfil his dream of winning the coveted ICC title.

It remains to be seen if the captaincy change in Mumbai heralds a similar move in India’s T20I team. Rohit is India’s all-format captain, but he hasn’t played a T20I since losing in the semi-finals of the 2022 T20 World Cup in Australia. Hardik has captained India in the format when he has been available, leading them in 13 of their past 25 T20Is, but he is presently out of play due to an ankle injury acquired during the recent ODI World Cup. Another Mumbai Indians player, Suryakumar Yadav, captained India in the recently finished T20I series in South Africa.