Rohit Sharma: Feels good to qualify with one game to spare

Mumbai Indians skipper Rohit Sharma felt a flexible batting line-up gave him the option to promote big-hitters Kieron Pollard and Hardik Pandya up the order.

Rohit Sharma: "As a team, we have handled the pressure situations well."   -  pti

Last season, Mumbai Indians failed to make it to the Indian Premier League play-offs despite playing some good cricket. But this year, it has ensured a spot in the last-four, with a game to spare.

Mumbai captain, Rohit Sharma, expressed joy at his team's spirited performance. "It's (good) for us to qualify with one game to spare. In 2017, when we won the trophy, we qualified with two games in hand. As a team, we have handled the pressure situations well," Rohit said after the team's Super Over win against Sunrisers Hyderabad on Friday.

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Mumbai's successful run thus far is a collective effort, Rohit said. "A lot of guys have put their hand up and taken the responsibility which is why we don't have anyone, barring Quinton (de Kock), in the top five (of the highest run scorers). It's not about one or two individuals.

"If you want to win the tournament everyone needs to do well. That's the hallmark of this team, whether it is Rahul Chahar or Quinton. We don't believe in individuals to win the game on their own. We want everyone to chip in and take us over the line," Rohit explained.

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Rohit felt a flexible batting line-up gave him the option to promote big-hitters Kieron Pollard and Hardik Pandya up the order.

"If you look at the whole tournament, they (Hardik and Pollard) have batted around the 14th or 15th overs and scored 70-80 runs the maximum number of times. Right from number 3-7 all our batsmen are flexible. They can bat anywhere at any given time which makes our job easier," he said.

"And with Pollard and Hardik, we have that option. Polly has done it a few times - if you remember he had done that against Punjab (batted at no 4 and made 83 off 31 balls). We will keep our options open," he added.

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Against Hyderabad, Mumbai batted first after winning the toss and Rohit admitted that it was done keeping in mind the difficulty faced while chasing a modest score against the Royal Challengers Bangalore.

"This year the conditions here are such that the ball spins in the second half. We saw against RCB — we were chasing 170 (171) and we struggled to chase in spite of scoring 70 in the first six overs. The pitch has been up and done. We had decided that if it was an important match we will put up runs on the board and then defend," the captain said.

Mumbai will play its last home game against Kolkata Knight Riders on Sunday.