So far we have played two games in the tournament and results have been mixed. We started on the right note and managed a comprehensive win against Chennai Super Kings in their own den. But in the next game at home front we faltered and couldn’t chase a modest total of 130 runs. So there are some positives to pick and some mistakes which can be rectified.
Looking at the last game, without taking much credit away from the Pune Warrior bowlers, I very seriously feel that the target was very much within reach. If we would have applied our strategies a little better and taken some more responsibility, result could have been better.
Targets like 129 in T-20 format are always tricky. Teams often get confused as to what approach one needs to take to reach this kind of a total. Every chase has to be managed and the best way to manage it is to never allow the pressure to build on you. At times you have to play your natural game and at times you need to surrender the same for the greater cause of getting the right result.
After the match, a lot of people asked me if bowling first after winning the toss was not a very good decision. But I fully back my decision and I have my own logic to support it. If we had given away 170 runs in the first innings, I would have thought bowling first has backfired.
But we restricted Pune at 129 runs and thought that things were very much under control. We bowled very well and fielded really well to get this kind of total to chase. At the mid-innings if you had asked people, nine out of ten would have said Mumbai should sail past this total. So basically we faltered in the second half of the match.
This again proves that in a format like this things change very quickly. One small mistake, a few moments of casualness and situation can change very dramatically. The target which appears manageable with the run rate of six-something can shoot to eight or nine with few wickets falling. Then, more often than not, a few lean overs follow and you are under pressure.
But the idea is to gaze the situation and not to over react or over analyze it. You have to constantly think what the bowlers are trying and what they want you to do - in what situation they are dragging you and how you need to change the course of the game. One should always have that intent and belief to change the course of the game. We have the resources and the men to do the job.
These are early days in the league and I have immense faith in the ability and desire of this side. And with each passing day we will learn and get better. Good sides learn from their mistakes and don’t repeat them. That’s what a team is for and that is what I expect from them.
We have already reached the coastal city of Visakhapatnam and are ready to take on Deccan Chargers at their home turf. The wicket at this ground has always been batting friendly and small square boundaries make it little more difficult for the bowlers. Chennai Super Kings’ total in the first innings confirm this behaviour. We are ready and eager to take on Chargers who I am sure will come hard after their defeat in the first game.