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Harsh Kalan in Kolkata 27 May 2013 - 05:27am IST

I’ve enjoyed leading my side: Rohit Sharma

MI skipper talks about maiden, successful captaincy stint in IPL

Rohit Sharma’s leadership was one of the cornerstones of Mumbai Indians successful IPL 2013 campaign. The stylish batsman was handed the captaincy in the early stages of the season, and far from buckling under pressure he managed to make the most of the opportunity on offer.

Along the way, the 26-year-old was ably guided and backed by experienced MI players, coaches and support staff. In an exclusive interview with IPLT20.com, Rohit Sharma speaks of how all the pieces fell in place for the IPL 2013 champions under his leadership.

On the finals and what it meant to him

The way we performed shows the character of the team. It was not an easy victory and I am really happy. I would like to thank each and everyone as we stuck it out. This is for the people of Mumbai who have been coming and supporting us over five years. And, of course, it’s also for the fans of Mumbai Indians across the globe.

On winning with his hometown team

It is simply amazing to win the IPL title with Mumbai, my hometown. I have no words to describe this feeling. I am happy because our owners are really passionate about this game and they wanted us to win. They helped us in all possible ways. I would like to dedicate this victory to them.

On stepping into the role of captain

It was tough when we changed our captain. It was not easy to come in suddenly to do the job. But I have really enjoyed this role since the moment Ricky stepped down and I was handed the captaincy. I knew the responsibility would fall on my shoulders since I was vice captain for two years.

On the backing he received from his seniors

The support from Ricky Ponting from beyond the boundary was superb. And it was not just Ricky Ponting, but everybody else as well. Right from John Wright to our masseur… they were really fantastic. I would like to mention Robin Singh as he has been working day in and day out with all of us. Anil Kumble was brilliant and so was our support staff. We just stuck together as a team, which is really important in this format.

On Sachin Tendulkar finally winning the elusive IPL title

Yes, this was the only trophy he did not have. Now he is happy. You could see how excited he was when we won. That shows what this win means to him.

On MI’s successful run at the Eden Gardens

We have always done well in Kolkata. We have had an outstanding record here over the last six years. Plus, the people of Kolkata are really amazing. They have been supporting us. Even when we play against KKR, we get some support.

On his own form this season

I am happy with my overall form, but I am a little bit disappointed with my performance in the Playoffs. But it happens sometimes. I was focusing on getting my team in shape for this challenge. 

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