Indian Premier League – Mumbai Indians
The Mumbai Indians (Hindi: मुंबई इंडियंस) are a franchise cricket team representing the city of Mumbai in the Indian Premier League (IPL). The team is one of the eight founding members of the IPL in 2008. They are one of the main teams in the city, together with clubs like the Mumbai cricket team and football club Mumbai FC. The franchise is owned by India’s biggest conglomerate, Reliance Industries, through its 100% subsidiary IndiaWin Sports. The primary home ground of the Mumbai Indians is the Wankhede Stadium.
The Mumbai Indians are currently captained by Rohit Sharma, and coached by John Wright. They won the 2011 Champions League Twenty20 after beating IPL rivals Royal Challengers Bangalore by 31 runs in the final. The team won its first IPL title, in 2013, by defeating Chennai Super Kings by 23 runs in the finals played at Kolkata, and then bowled out the Rajasthan Royals by 33 runs to win its second Champions League Twenty20 title. Rohit Sharma is the leading run-getter of the team while Lasith Malinga is the leading wicket-taker.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced in September 2007 the establishment of the Indian Premier League, a Twenty20 competition to be started in 2008. In January 2008, the BCCI unveiled the owners of eight city-based franchises. The Mumbai franchise was sold to the Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) for $111.9 million, making it the most expensive team in the league. RIL, owned by Mukesh Ambani, acquired the rights to the franchise for a period of 10 years. The franchise was eventually named “Mumbai Indians”.
The Mumbai Indians were the most watched team on television in the first season of the IPL, totaling to 239 million viewers. After posting a revenue of 69 crore and expenditure of 85 crore, the first season left the owners with net loss of INR 16 crore and were expected to break even in the 2009 season.
Team name, motto and logo design
The motto of the team is “Duniya Hila Denge Hum”, which translates to We will rock the world. The first anthem of Mumbai Indian was based on this motto, wherein the Bollywood actor Hrithik Roshan was roped in for a promotional video campaign.
The team logo has the Sudarshana Chakra with the team’s name engraved in it.
The team’s primary color is blue with golden stripes on either sides of the jersey. The team colours was almost the same in 2008 and 2009, with Idea as the principal sponsor, except for the colour shade and additional sponsors. In 2010, a new kit with golden stripes was unveiled. In 2011, kit used in 2010 is being used with Hero Honda as the main sponsor. The 2011 jersey also has three gold stripes going towards the back on the side of the jersey for the new players in the team. The kit manufacturer is Adidas.
The current theme song of the Mumbai Indians is the famous Ala Re. However, after every boundary or a wicket by the team, a music titled “Akkha Mumbai Khelega” is always played by the stadium disc jockey.
The Mumbai Indians play their home games at the Wankhede Stadium. However, in 2010, they played all seven home games at the Brabourne Stadium while the Wankhede Stadium underwent renovation for hosting a few group stage as well as the final match of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011. Mumbai Indians won six out of the seven matches at the Brabourne Stadium that season.
Sponsors and partners
American multinational corporation – Mastercard is the official founding sponsor of the Mumbai Indians, while Adidas is their official apparel sponsor. Associate sponsors and official partners include Bridgestone, Dheeraj and East Coast LLC, Kingfisher, Wrigley’s Orbit, Wrigley’s Boomer, Royal Stag, Air India, Msn and Red FM 93.5.Now Hero Motocorp is also one of the main sponsors of Mumbai Indians from 2011 season onwards.
2008-2009: Struggle in the initial seasons
The Indian Premier League named four players as icon players for their respective city franchises which made the players unavailable to play for any team other than their city team. Sachin Tendulkar was named Mumbai’s icon player. The icon player was also entitled to earn 15% more than the next-best paid player in their team. At first player auctions for the inaugural IPL season conducted in February 2008, the Mumbai franchise bought several star international cricketers such as Sanath Jayasuriya, Harbhajan Singh, Shaun Pollock, Lasith Malinga and Robin Uthappa. The franchise named Sachin Tendulkar as the captain of the team and appointed former India cricketer Lalchand Rajput as the head coach. After Harbhajan’s suspension, Shaun Pollock assumed the leadership duties until Tendulkar’s return on 24 May. Under Pollock’s captaincy, Mumbai won six out of their next six games which left them needing to win two more out of the remaining four matches to qualify for the semifinals. Mumbai suffered three last-over defeats in the next three games, including two off the last ball, before winning their last league match. They finished fifth in the points table with 7 wins and 7 losses, missing out on a semifinal spot by just one point.
The 2009 season was played in South Africa as it coincided with multi-phase 2009 Indian general elections due to which the Government of India refused to commit the Indian paramilitary forces to provide security for the IPL. Before the start of the season, Mumbai Indians traded Robin Uthappa for Zaheer Khan with Royal Challengers Bangalore, and Ashish Nehra for Shikhar Dhawan with the Delhi Daredevils. They relied heavily on Duminy and Tendulkar’s batting, and Malinga’s bowling along with minimal contributions from other players. With only five wins from 14 matches, Mumbai finished on seventh place in the league table.
2010-2012: Rise as a formidable team
At the 2010 players auction, Mumbai Indians bought Trinidadian all-rounder Kieron Pollard for $750,000 following a secret tie-breaker. After the auction, they signed up ten uncapped Indian players out whom seven were former ICL players. Former India cricketer Robin Singh was named as the head coach of the team as Pollock took up the role of bowling coach. Mumbai had to shift their home venue to Brabourne Stadium for the season since the Wankhede was undergoing renovation to host some matches of the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup. Mumbai won seven of their first eight games to take the top spot in the points table. Their success was mainly due to the efforts of Tendulkar, Malinga, Harbhajan, Ambati Rayudu and Saurabh Tiwary. They won three of the remaining six league games and finished with 20 points from 14 games at the top of the points table.
In 2011, with the addition of two new teams to the IPL, the IPL Governing Council declared that each franchise could retain a maximum of four players of their 2010 squad, and the rest of the international players would be auctioned. Mumbai Indians retained Tendulkar, Harbhajan, Pollard and Malinga for a sum of $4.5 million. This retention left the franchise with the power of spending $4.5 million at the auction where they purchased Indian batsman Rohit Sharma for $2 million, former Australian all-rounder Andrew Symonds for $850,000, and pacer Munaf Patel for $700,000.
2013-Present: Regrowth of the team
The 2013 IPL saw Anil Kumble being appointed as the chief mentor, after he quit a similar position from Royal Challengers Bangalore. With a slump in batting form of Sachin Tendulkar and Ricky Ponting, they were eventually dropped from the playing eleven and Rohit Sharma took lead of the team as well as the batting side. Having the experienced advice of the likes of Anil Kumble, Johnty Rhodes and Sachin Tendulkar, the team emerged victorious in IPL 2013 and continued the victory streak in the Champions League.