Defending champion Mumbai Indians is standing at the threshold of an early exit from the ongoing IPL, but an optimistic bowling coach Shane Bond feels the team has enough arsenal at its disposal to turn things around in its must-win remaining six games.
With just two wins from eight matches, Mumbai Indians is currently languishing at the second last position in the eight-team IPL. The three-time champion, Mumbai Indians, however, has six more games remaining and Bond said that it still can turnaround the script, just like 2015, when it went on to win its second IPL crown.
“We have six games left and we have to win them all. That is what we have to do. I still believe that when you look at our squad, we have key players who can win us six games in a row. We have done it in the past (in 2015) and I believe we can do it again. We just have to take one game at a time and hopefully, we can do that,” Bond said after Mumbai lost by 14 runs against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), here, on Tuesday night.
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Bond said that Mumbai players take a lot of pride in their performances, so motivation is never a concern. “Motivation is there for the players. The guys take a lot of pride in their performances,” he said.
Bond said that Mumbai bowlers did well for the most part of the day, except for three overs of the RCB innings, which cost them 60-odd runs.
“We gave 15 runs above than what we would have liked. We bowled well for 17 overs. We bowled three terrible overs, which cost us probably 60-65 runs. I think 155 or anything under 160 would have been good for us,” he said.
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J.P. Duminy conceded 22 runs in the fourth over, Hardik Pandya gave away 20 in the 10th, while Mitchell McClenaghan was hammered for 24 runs in the final over, which eventually hurt Mumbai badly.
Bond also defended skipper Rohit Sharma’s decision to come down the order instead of opening the innings. “If you look at the success of the team and the times we have won titles, he (Rohit) has always batted at No. 4. He has batted at No. 4 and won games for us. There is always a debate about where Rohit should bat. However, history suggests No. 4 is the best place for Rohit,” he said.
Meanwhile, RCB pacer Tim Southee praised Virat Kohli’s captaincy and Mohammad Siraj’s brilliance with the ball in the penultimate, which left Mumbai to score 23 runs off the last over.
“It got a little bit close towards the end. However, I think Virat backed the guys to go out there and back their strongest skill set, and we saw that with the way Siraj closed out his last over and made my job a little bit easier, with a few more to defend,” he said.
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