We are going to play fearless cricket in the playoffs, says Rohit Sharma
Mumbai Indians (MI) skipper Rohit Sharma was elated after his team defeated Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) by 9 wickets to cement their place in the play-offs of the Indian Premier League 2015. Not only did MI make it to the next round, they knocked SRH out of the tournament and finished second on the points table, giving them two opportunities to make it to the final.
Rohit was pleased with his team's turnaround after a poor start to the tournament when they had just won just 1 out of the first 5 games.
“It feels great. But this just shows the character of the Mumbai Indians. We have created an atmosphere inside the dressing room and around Mumbai Indians that no matter what situations we are in, we never have to put our head down. When we started off losing four games in a row, nobody believed we could qualify. “Look at us now, in the top two in the table at the end of the league stage.” said Rohit during the post match interview with iplt20.com.
The skipper has been the key figure for the Mumbai Indians side and his role as captain has been very crucial for their success. He spoke about how he managed the team in a do-or-die situation like yesterday (against SRH) : “As a captain, as a leader it is very important for me to remain positive no matter what happens on the field. For me it is important to keep talking to a lot of players and ensure they stay in the present. I wanted to lead from the front. As a captain, my role was simple because I had to manage the team efficiently on the field. I am glad our ways have worked and all I can say is I am a happy captain right now.”
Mumbai Indians are going to face table-toppers Chennai Super Kings in Qualifier 1 on 19th May. One advantage they would have before going into this match is that they would be playing at home – Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai. Rohit believes that this situation would give them the leverage to play fearless cricket.
“Finishing in the top two obviously gives us a chance to play fearlessly. I feel we have played good games till now but the playoffs will be a different ball game. You can’t afford to make too many mistakes but knowing you have a second chance it gives us the license to play fearless cricket. We have been in this situation before in 2013 where we played against the same opposition, qualified in the top two and we had another chance.” he asserted.
In the game against SRH last night, Mitchell McClenaghan was the key bowler as he picked up three wickets for only 16 runs in his four overs while Lasith Malinga and Jagadeesha Suchith chipped in with two wickets apiece to bowl out SRH for just 113. Mumbai then reached the target without much fuss, thanks to fine knocks from Parthiv Patel (51*) and Lendl Simmons (48) .