Due to the presence of hitters like Kieron Pollard, Cory Anderson, reliable Ambati Raidu, and the skipper Rohit Sharma himself, the Mukesh Ambani-owned franchise can be termed as one of the most dangerous side of the cash rich league. Off spinner Harbhajan Singh has the ability to change the course of single handedly either by bowling or batting.

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Mumbai Indians, the champions of 2013 edition, will also have the services of Sri Lankan pacer Lasith Malinga, who is arguably one of the best bowler of the shortest version of the game. Presence of two greats of cricketing history—Sachin Tendulkar and Ricky Ponting-- as mentor and coach respectively will also bolster the chances of the team. Ponting's aggression and experience would be a big plus to the squad.

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Last year, led by hard-hitting Indian opener Rohit Sharma, the team reached the play-off stages where they lost to Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in the eliminator by 7 wickets.

But after the 2015 IPL auctions the team looks more formidable even before the start.

A SWOT analysis of Mumbai Indians

Strengths: Ever since the departure of Sachin Tendulkar from the 22-yard strip, Mumbai Indians have struggled to make a balance on the top of batting chart. However, the induction of Australia's World Cup-winning opener Aaron Finch as an opener will solve the problem of 2013 event champions. This time they will also have the options of Parthiv Patel, Unmukt Chand and Siddhesh Lad for the opening slot. Rohit, Rayudu, Pollard, Anderson and Simmons will make Mumbai Indians one of the strongest batting line-up of the T20 event.

Weakness: Bowling department has remained a cause of worry for the Mumbai Indians ever since the start of IPL. The team rely heavily on Sri Lankan pacer Malinga, who had performed  well  in last season. Since joining the side in 2009, he has bowled at an economy of 6.53 in 83 matches, claiming 119 wickets. The Sri Lankan is also the first bowler to complete 100 wickets in the competition. In the spin department, an off day for Harbhajan will cost Rohit Sharma team dearly. However, the inclusion of Vinay Kumar will some how fill the gap but the right-arm pacer has a tendency to go for runs.

Opportunities: A team like Mumbai Indians have the ability to crush any team. After losing five matches on a trot, Mumbai Indians went on win next five out of seven to qualify for the play offs in the last season. It is almost impossible for any visiting team to defeat Mumbai Indians at home.

Threats: Relying on few big names will be one of the greatest threat for the Mumbai Indians. Team had also a tendency to fail at the crucial junctures. Despite qualifying for the playoffs on five times in seven editions, the Mumbai Indians have manged to win a single time in 2013 which shows that the team faltered at knockout stages.


The squad:

Indian Players: Rohit Sharma (captain), Aditya Tare, Ambati Rayudu, Jaspreet Bumrah, Pawan Suyal, Shreyas Gopal, Unmukt Chand, R Vinay Kumar, Parthiv Patel (wicket-keeper), Akshay Wakhare, Pragyan Ojha, Nitish Rana, Sidhesh Lad, J Suchith, Hardik Pandya, Abhimanyu Mithun, Harbhajan Singh.

Foreign Singings: Corey Anderson (New Zealand), Josh Hazlewood (Australia), Kieron Pollard (West Indies), Lasith Malinga (Sri Lanka), Merchant de Lange (South Africa), Lendl Simmons (West Indies), Aaron Finch (Australia), Mitchell McClenaghan (New Zealand), Aiden Blizzard (Australia).

Team Schedule -

Home: vs Kings XI Punjab (April 12), Chennai Super Kings (April 17), Sunrisers Hyderabad (April 25), Rajasthan Royals (May 1), Delhi Daredevils (May 5), Royal Challengers (May 10), Kolkata Knight Riders (May 14)

Away: vs Kolkata Knight Riders (April 8), Rajasthan Royals (April 14), Royal Challengers Bangalore (April 19), Delhi Daredevils (April 23), Kings XI Punjab (May 3), Chennai Super Kings (May 8), Sunrisers Hyderabad (May 17)

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