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Are the Mumbai Indians Set for an Era of Dominance in the IPL?

On November 10th, 2020, the Mumbai Indians clinched their second consecutive Indian Premier League title. Spearheaded by India’s Rohit Sharma, the franchise won the 2020 IPL final against the Delhi Capitals by five wickets. To date, the Mumbai Indians have now won the competition five times, missing out on the sought-after trophy on only three occasions since 2013. Moreover, when you consider that the tournament only came to fruition in 2008, the teams’ achievements are remarkable, particularly in recent years. So, following their most recent triumph, let’s consider whether the Mumbai Indians can build a dynasty over the coming years.   

A Well-Rounded Team  

Throughout the world of team sports, dominance is the goal for every outfit. From Michael Jordan’s Chicago Bulls to Mercedes’ superiority in Formula One, unrivalled success is the reason that many participate in high-level sports. Although the Mumbai Indians are yet to enjoy similar levels of success to the above dynasties, there can be no doubts that they’re well placed to sustain a period of dominance in the IPL.

After a slow start to the competition in the opening two campaigns – where they came fifth and seventh respectively – the franchise has only finished outside of the top four on two other occasions. Along with their five titles, the Mumbai Indians also reached the final in 2010 but lost out against the Chennai Super Kings. Following their recent record-extending victory against the Delhi Capitals, Keiron Pollard labelled his team as the best T20 franchise in the world, as per ESPN Cricinfo. On an individual level, Mumbai’s fifth IPL triumph saw the West Indian become the most successful 20-over cricketer in the sport’s history with 15 titles, overtaking Dwayne Bravo. 

Over the coming years, few would bet against the franchise extending their current title-winning record given the balance of their team. From a bowling perspective, Mumbai were unlucky in the fact that one of their players didn’t win the Purple Cap in 2020. According to Times of India, Jasprit Bumrah finished only three wickets behind Kagiso Rabada with 27, while Trent Boult registered 25 wickets from 17 matches. The team’s batting department is also in safe hands. Along with Sharma and Hardik Pandya, Mumbai Indians can also rely on 22-year-old Ishan Kishan, who hit the most sixes of any player in this year’s IPL with 30.   

Could Expansion Hinder Their Pursuit of a Dynasty? 

Interestingly, according to reports, the 2021 IPL is potentially going to feature nine teams. At the time of writing, there are suggestions that the Super Kings’ all-rounder, Suresh Raina, may lead the new franchise, with Ahmedabad in Gujarat being the likely destination for the newcomer. Although there is nothing confirmed about the proposed expansion, it’s worth considering how this could impact the Mumbai Indians’ pursuit of a dynasty. Perhaps most obviously, should this come to fruition, then each team will have to play several more games, which may have a bearing on squad selection. 

In being faced with an additional team, the Mumbai Indians’ hopes of becoming the dominant franchise will be made even trickier. However, from a spectator standpoint, the expansion will only enhance both competition and unpredictability. In turn, this will have a knock-on effect on the sports local and global popularity, with increasing numbers of fans likely to be intrigued by how well a new franchise will perform.   

Not only that, but it will also boost the market offerings at online sports betting in India where you can bet on cricket. At present, operators such as Royal Panda specialise in an array of cricket-related markets, ranging from international tests to the IPL. Through the platform, prospective bettors can take advantage of various promotions while immersing themselves in the sport’s most highly-anticipated events. 

Can Anybody Stop Them? 

While, of course, recency bias will perhaps impact on the answer to the above question, it would be brave to argue that the Mumbai Indians won’t be among the leading contenders for the IPL title in 2021. Although little is guaranteed, their attack-minded batsmen and all-action bowlers make them a force to be reckoned with. In 2020, few were able to lay a glove on the record-setting franchise, who have the potential to dominate the IPL throughout the next decade.

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