The Indian Premier League entered the last day of league stages on Friday and all eyes were on the clash between Mumbai Indians and Sunrisers Hyderabad in Abu Dhabi. Rohit Sharma’s side came into this contest with a very little glimmer of hope to go through to playoffs but they needed to bat first to stand any chance. Hence, the toss was always going to be something that everyone had been waiting for and as the two captains walked out in the middle, there was a big surprise in the other camp.
Instead of Kane Williamson, it was Manish Pandey who was seen alongside Rohit Sharma which left everyone puzzled. Notably, the SRH batsman has been out of the playing XI in last few matches which is why it was surprising to see him suddenly taking over the captaincy duties. As everyone was confused, all the answers behind the same were revealed at toss.
Manish Pandey makes his debut as IPL captain
Luckily for MI, Hitman won the toss and elected to bat first in hope of pulling off a miraculous victory (of more than 171 runs). As Manish Pandey came to talk, he revealed that Williamson suffered an injury few minutes ahead of the game which is why he was not playing. “My first game as IPL captain. Last minute call. Kane (Williamson) had a niggle on his elbow,” Pandey said.
The 32-year-old also told that even Bhuvneshwar Kumar (who would have been the captain in absence of Williamson) had a niggle which is why the pacer was also left out of the side. With so many youngsters in the side, SRH management decided to recall Pandey to lead the side and also add some experience in the batting line-up.
As Manish Pandey replaced Bhuvneshwar Kumar, it was Mohammad Nabi who was included in the side in place of Kane Williamson.