Ponting's replacement at the top, Dwayne Smith was the perfect answer to Mumbai's opening woes. Smith managed four half-centuries and many more impressive scores. His 28-ball 68 against Chennai Super Kings in a losing cause saw him at his brutal best.
He may have retired from international cricket earlier this year, but Michael Hussey showed exactly why he still remains impossible to distract at the crease. With a staggering 732 runs from 17 matches at an average of 56.30, Hussey holds the prestigious orange cap.
Perhaps the most consistent batsman of all six seasons combined, Suresh Raina has played a pivotal role in Chennai's road to the final. Raina not only notched up his first IPL century (100 not out against Kings XI Punjab), but also followed it up with 99 not out against Sunrisers Hyderabad two games later. Raina has managed 548 runs from 17 matches.
Mohit Sharma has been one of the IPL's major finds this year. The 24-year Haryana pacer has dismissed the likes of Rahul Dravid, Virender Sehwag and David Warner with immaculate line and length. With a strong outswinger in his repertoire, Sharma has twice picked up three wickets this season with a best of 3 for 10 against Delhi Daredevils.
Dwayne Bravo once again impressed with his all-round skills. Although his batting did not really fire majorly, he made up for it with his bowling scalping by 28 wickets from 17 matches. Bravo's animated self also saw him add a bit of 'Caribbean flavour' with his dancing moves.
The fantasy opening pair of Sachin Tendulkar and Ricky Ponting did not live upto the hype. Managing just two 50-run partnerships from six matches, Ponting was dropped from the playing XI following a string of poor scores.
Many doubted Harbhajan Singh's inclusion in the Mumbai playing XI, but he proved why he remains India's most experienced spinner. Harbhajan is not only the joint highest wicket-taker for Mumbai but has also played a couple of crucial innings batting down the order.
The big-hitting Kieron Pollard's explosion was a bit due, but once that moment came, the hurricane took the game away from Hyderabad. Scoring nine off the first 10 balls, Pollard got to his fifty on the 20th. On one hand, if his crucial innings made Mumbai's play-off berth easier, his stunning catches in the outfield were unbelievable to the naked eyes.
Mumbai Indians' bowling was a powerful bunch, mainly due to Mitchell Johnson who spearheaded the bowling attack. The Aussie left-armer rediscovered his swing and gave Mumbai their first breakthrough more often than not. Johnson has 22 wickets from 16 matches with a best of 3 for 27 against Chennai.
MS Dhoni finds himself right where he belongs. Guiding his side to their fourth straight IPL final, Dhoni has led from the front on several occasions. Apart from providing stability in crisis situations, he has unleashed his big hitting capabilities whenever CSK needed quick runs towards the end. His demolition of Hyderabad's Dale Steyn at home was a testimony of his strength.