IPL 2021: Happy With Win, But Rohit Sharma Calls for Improvement In Middle Overs Batting
After defending another moderate total at the MA Chidambaram stadium in Chennai, Mumbai Indians captain Rohit Sharma said 150 was a good score and credited his bowlers for defending it. MI made 150 before bowling SRH out for 137 in 19.2 overs to win their second game this season. The captain, though, called for improvement from his batsmen in the middle overs.
“It was a great effort from the bowling unit. We knew it wasn’t going to be easy. On that pitch, when you’re bowling well, it’s not easy. I thought it was a good score on that pitch,” he said at the post match presentation.
“You saw from both the teams, trying to capitalise on the powerplay. Having said that, I think we can bat better in the middle overs. All these guys have played a lot of cricket on pitches like these. So, there are areas to work on. At the same time, don’t want to take credit from the batsmen. It is tough batting on the pitch.
“I think the pitch gets slower and slower. Rahul was turning the ball in his fourth over, which was the 12th or 13th over. That doesn’t happen in Mumbai. The bowlers are always in the game. Even the fast bowlers, the ball was reversing in some matches as well.”
Rohit said the key to success was a set batsman batting through in the middle overs.
“The slowness of the deck doesn’t allow batsmen to come and slog straightaway. One set batter carrying through is needed, which is what’s not happening for all of the teams that have played here.
“Polly (Kieron Pollard) has done it for so many years for us at the back end. We have the confidence in him. It’s all about him getting some time in the middle. Our fielding was really good tonight, that’s something we take pride in. Those run outs and also the catches.”
Meanwhile, Hardik Pandya played a huge part running out David Warner and Abdul Samad, but he said he hardly practices fielding.
“I just make sure that the ball is in my hand and then target the stumps. To be honest, the run-out of Warner, I wasn’t expecting him to be that far, I just wanted to take aim and hit, and only then I realized that he was well short. To be honest I don’t practice fielding much.
“We have a lot of character as a team, they got to a great start, but our bowlers pulled them back nicely, bowled good line and lengths, made sure that the pressure was built. Rahul Chahar, Krunal and all the others – we bowled as a unit, held the nerves and used all the opportunities that came our way. We have plenty of experience, lots of feedback from the players and it helps having a captain who makes the most of it.”