Mumbai Indians (MI) captain Rohit Sharma minced no words after his team’s 9-wicket defeat against Punjab Kings at Chennai’s Chepauk on Friday and said that something was amiss in the batting line-up.
The defending champions, who have scored in excess of 150 runs only twice in IPL 2021, could manage only 131 (for the loss of 6 wickets) versus Punjab in their allotted 20 overs quota.
Quinton de Kock departed in the 2nd over thanks to a very impressive spell from Deepak Hooda, while Ishan Kishan, who was promoted to number three, got out in the 7th over after scoring 6 off 17 balls.
Mumbai Indians scored 21 runs in the Powerplay and at the halfway mark they were 49 for the loss of two wickets.
If not for the 79-run partnership between Rohit Sharma and Suryakumar Yadav, Mumbai Indians would have struggled to cross even the100-run mark.
Despite the momentum provided by the duo, Mumbai imploded in the end overs and lost 4 quick wickets (Rohit, Suryakumar, Hardik and Krunal Pandya). Ravi Bisnoi and Mohammed Shami took two wickets each.
“Not enough runs. I still feel it is not a bad wicket to bat on. You saw how Punjab Kings batted and won the game with 9 wickets in hand. It is just the application which is missing in our batting. If you get 150-160 on this wicket then you are always in the game, that is something we failed to do in the last two games.
“You can look at it either way, I thought their bowlers bowled well in the powerplay, Ishan was trying to hit but couldn’t get it and even I was not able to hit. We have batted well in the powerplay previously but today we failed to do so. Something is missing in our batting line-up, we are not able to bat 20 overs in the fashion we want and something that we have to look at and see what we can do,” Rohit Sharma said in the post-match presentation ceremony.
Sending Ishan Kishan at three was tactical thing
Further, the 33-year-old stated that pushing back Suryakumar Yadav at the number four position was a tactical move in a quest to put a better score on the board. Suryakumar, one of the two in-form Mumbai batsman, was identified as a better player of spin bowling in the middle overs.
“It was just a tactical thing, we wanted someone who would bat well against the spinners in the middle and SKY was the one to do that. But when you play on such a challenging pitch then you have to be ready for all the possibilities. When you try, if it works it looks good and if it doesn’t work then it looks bad, but we always back the decision we make. We are not putting enough effort on the field and when the conditions are tough you need to understand how you need to bat and how you need to bowl.”
Mumbai Indians will next face Rajasthan Royals (RR) on April 29 (Thursday).