Rohit Sharma Effect: Mumbai Indians’ Captaincy Shift Sparks Fan Backlash and Social Media Exodus

The announcement of Hardik Pandya as the new captain for the Mumbai Indians in the upcoming IPL 2024 season has triggered an intense response from fans, leading to both vocal discontent and a significant exodus on social media platforms.

In a surprising move, Mumbai Indians bid farewell to Rohit Sharma’s decade-long captaincy, a decision that left fans disappointed and disheartened. Social media witnessed an outpouring of displeasure, with some fans resorting to burning Mumbai Indians jerseys and caps in protest. Videos capturing these fiery displays quickly went viral, adding fuel to the already heated reactions.


The fallout extended to Mumbai Indians’ social media presence, especially on X and Instagram. A mere hour after the captaincy announcement, the franchise witnessed a notable decline in followers on X, dropping from 8.6 million to 8.2 million. Instagram, too, experienced a dip of almost five lakh followers, leaving Mumbai Indians with a current count of 12.7 million.

Rohit Sharma, who had led the team since 2013, accumulated an impressive record during his tenure, boasting 87 wins in 158 IPL matches, the highest by any captain in that timeframe. The decision to replace him with Hardik Pandya has sparked debates, conspiracy theories, and speculations, as fans grapple with the abrupt change.

Mahela Jayawardene, the Global Head of Performance for Mumbai Indians, defended the move, stating, “It is part of legacy building and staying true to the MI philosophy of being future-ready.” He emphasized Mumbai Indians’ history of strategic leadership transitions, with Hardik Pandya now set to lead the team into the IPL 2024 season.

Hardik Pandya, who returned to Mumbai Indians after a stint with Gujarat Titans, is stepping into the captaincy role with a legacy to uphold, having previously led the Titans to victory in 2022 and securing a runner-up position in 2023. The unexpected shakeup has not only altered the dynamics on the field but has also ignited fervent discussions within the cricketing community.