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Wright was full of praise for the brilliant innings by the West Indies cricketer as MI registered their seventh straight victory on their home turf. The coach also showered appreciation on Sharma and his leadership ability while speaking to IPLT20.com after the win.
Excerpts from the interview:
On Pollard and the victory
What an amazing feat of hitting. I have never seen anything like that before. It was amazing and people all over the world watched that.
On whether they were anxious when Sachin Tendulkar retired hurt and Dinesh Karthik got out
We were always up against it in a run chase. And they got those wickets immediately after Sachin retired so we didn’t look like we were going to be winning the game but then that’s what a player like Pollard can do. That’s special. In this league you see some amazing cricket and that was an amazing innings.
On Rohit Sharma’s innings in the game
He has done it with the bat right through this tournament. He has stepped into the captaincy role and he looks the part. It is very early days yet but I think he is going to be a very good leader. On the decision of making Rohit Sharma the captain
We wanted to play two fast bowlers, they were to be overseas, so obviously (Mitchell) Johnson and (Lasith) Malinga. It was a tough decision and we got to Kolkata where we talked through with Ricky (Ponting) and he was part of that decision making process and he has done a fantastic job with his leadership off the field. He is of like our club captain. We all contribute in our various ways but Rohit has of taken to the job. He seems to be suited and the responsibility sits well with him and that shows through his performances with the bat and some of the decision making on the field. It is one of those things, in IPL things change very quickly. Flexibility is important.
On choosing Rohit Sharma to lead
It was a joint decision but I think still waters run deep and he lives in Mumbai. It is an obvious advantage to have a home captain, someone who lives in the city. I think the fans identify with it and that is important and so we have someone from Mumbai leading Mumbai Indians which I think is pretty appropriate. On winning all seven games at home so far
It has been our bowling. We have won a lot of tosses, batted first, put pressure on the opposition and been aggressive with the ball. Monday was bit different and it took a piece of magic really to win chasing but hopefully we will learn from today’s game and be stronger in couple of day’s time. That is a big game for us because if we are interested in finishing at No. 1 or 2 we know that, that is an important match.
On Dale Steyn’s penultimate over
Our batters had the situation under control. I thought we played that pretty well. They got five runs off that over which left it down to the last over. Unbelievably we got to the last two overs with the need of a run-a-ball. We wanted to be looking at getting just six or seven runs in the last over and without a new batter having to go out there and the situation was handled beautifully.
On Dale Steyn’s bowling in the game
He is a beautiful bowler to watch. His lines are good. He has got good pace. He is a big factor for South Africa and No. 1 in the Test standings. He is a good combination with the other two bowlers in SA. He is world class.
On the next match against Rajasthan Royals and what would be the plans knowing Rahul Dravid as closely as he does
I think Rahul is very well researched and very well organised along with Paddy Upton and their group. They have been playing really intelligent cricket. I don’t think it is any accident that they are where they are. I think they have shown great flexibility during this tournament and the way they have picked their team and made various changes to their batting order, they play smart cricket. They beat us fair and square the last time we were in Rajasthan and we would like to turn the table but we know it will be a tough match. We have got a lot of respect for them.
On three teams with 20 points each, with only the run rate separating them
Run-rate is important and I think it was always going to be a factor in this tournament. It was going to come to this situation at some stage. We will try and keep it as healthy as possible.
A Kieron Pollard blitzkrieg snatched victory from the Sunrisers Hyderabad at the Wankhede Stadium on Monday evening. The visiting team’s batters posted their highest total on the board and their bowlers followed up with a good performance to tie down the Mumbai Indians to 117 for three from 16 overs.
Then Pollard unleashed himself on SRH and helped claim 29 runs in the 17th over to tilt the match in the home team’s favour. From thence there was no looking back for the hosts as they coasted to a comfortable win in the end.
Young Hanuma Vihariwho made a 37-ball 41 and was involved in a 73-run stand with Shikhar Dhawan, followed by a 55-run partnership with Cameron White, to help set-up the match spoke to IPLT20.com after the loss. While he looked back on the game, the batsman also reflected on his stint in the Pepsi Indian Premier League so far.
Excerpts from the interview:
A hard fought game
In the first 16 overs of their batting we were well in the game. Nearly 80 percent of it was in our favour but Kieron Pollard changed the game in three overs. It was such a brilliant innings, we could not stop him.
What was it like batting with Shikhar Dhawan and Cameron White?
It was a good experience. We needed to score big runs on this wicket because it was a good wicket and we knew it was a high scoring game. I needed to bat till the end and that was my role which I did till the 19th over and I am happy.
What have you learnt being a part of the Sunrisers Hyderabad team?
It is a big experience for me, my first IPL and we did well. We won eight games and we lost some close games. It has been a good IPL for me so far and if we can qualify it would be good.
What has been the learning for you as a batsman?
Looking at others bat and it being the first IPL for me there are so many things I have learnt. I will keep learning and during the off season I hope to improve as a better cricketer for next year.
What do you find different playing at the under-19 level, the domestic circuit and the IPL?
I think in the IPL one needs to be consistent and be able to hit the good balls too. In the IPL you don’t get easy balls to hit and as a batsman you need to capitalise on the loose balls.
How did you prepare to face the likes of Lasith Malinga Mitchell Johnson, Harbhajan Singh and others? What was going through your mind in the middle?
It was important for me not be overawed by the bowlers because, they are great bowlers and I had that at the back of my mind. It was important to watch the ball and play according to the merit. In my mind, I felt if I saw the bowler I would be overawed. I just thought of playing according to the merit of the ball.
Have you faced Dale Steyn and Waqar Younis in the nets?
Steyn is a world class bowler. He is the No. 1 bowler in the world. So I am very lucky to face him. If you can face Dale Steyn with success you can face any fast bowler in the world because he can swing the ball and swing it at such a pace which is deadly.
How do you place the praise and appreciation from senior cricketers?
I take it as a compliment because it should not be add pressure on me. With that in mind I try to improve.
How did it feel to play at the Wankhede Stadium?
It was a great experience. India won the (ICC) World Cup here and playing for the first time at the Wankhede is a special feeling. If we could have won the match, it would have been great.