Mumbai Indians skipper Rohit Sharma expressed disappointment over his side’s loss in the season opener and admitted that the defending champions were at least 20 runs short on a sluggish Chennai wicket. Rohit further said that it might take time for Mumbai to rediscover the intensity.
It was a fresh chapter of “new season, same old Mumbai” in Chennai on Friday as the defending champions, for the umpteenth time in their IPL history, ended up throwing away the first game of the season. After being inserted into bat, a paltry 159 was all Mumbai managed and the below-par total was chased down rather nervously by a Bangalore side that was bailed out of trouble, yet again, by the genius of AB de Villiers.
Mumbai were far from perfect on Friday, but skipper Rohit Sharma noted that the side lost the game with the bat. Mumbai added just 31 runs off their last 5 overs, and Rohit rightly claimed that his side were at least 20 runs short with the bat, particularly after setting up a great platform.
“Winning the championship is important, I guess, not the first game. Great fight, we didn't let it go easily. Although the score wasn't something we were happy with. We were 20 short,” Rohit said in the post-match presentation.
“Definitely not an easy pitch to bat on, odd ball was gripping. That's something we could think of in our next few games here. De Villiers batted really well and got them home. We made some mistakes, those are bound to happen. We need to move on.”
Neither Hardik Pandya nor Kieron Pollard bowled today, and it meant that Rohit, with the game slipping away, had to go to his trump card Bumrah well ahead of time, as a result of which the speedster exhausted all his 4 overs before the 19th over. Rohit said that the situation demanded Mumbai to gamble, but claimed that he was pleased with the performance of young Marco Jansen, who tried his best to defend 7 off the final over.
“[Jansen] is definitely a talent we've identified. When you look at the situation with four overs left they had AB and Christian, that's why we went with Bumrah and Boult to try and get them out.”
Mumbai, unlike last season, have not had any time to prepare, with most players walking straight into the camp from international duty, and thus the Mumbai skipper conceded that it might take time for the side to rediscover its intensity.
“In hindsight we can say that [the intensity will take time to arrive]. We haven't had much time together as a group and it was totally opposite in Dubai, where we began preparations a month before. But that's how the IPL has been played over the years, you just got to get in the game as quickly as possible.”
Mumbai will play their second game of the season against the Kolkata Knight Riders on Tuesday, April 13, at Chepauk.