Jayawardene: 'We could've been much smarter in our approach'

"Sometimes you need to take on challenges and adapt to them. We need to play the conditions," Jayawardene said after MI’s loss.

Mumbai Indians coach Mahela Jayawardene (right) is unhappy with the way the players have handled the crucial moments of play.   -  Vivek Bendre

The fresh wicket at Wankhede, chosen for the IPL 2018 tie between host Mumbai Indians and Sunrisers Hyderabad, exposed the chinks in a batsman's armour as stroke-players and sloggers struggled to read the ball off the pitch.

Shikhar Dhawan, Yusuf Pathan, Rohit Sharma, Kieron Pollard and Hardik Pandya failed to put bat on ball. Just how difficult batting was could be gauged from the fact that all of two sixes were hit by both teams - one each by Pathan and Pollard.

On a surface playing tricks, Pathan settled in for a patient knock.  His 29 off 33 deliveries helped Hyderabad to an eventually match-winning total of 118.

The visitor's victory was triggered by MI’s inability to adjust to the wicket. MI coach Mahela Jayawardene admitted: "We probably played as if there were demons in the wicket, which weren't there. Thinking wise we were very poor."

Asked about the Wankhede pitch, he said: "I was a little surprised by the slowness of the wicket. It was a fresh wicket, wasn't ideal for us as a home team."

MI folded for a paltry 87 with seven balls to spare. Jayawardene explained: "Sometimes you need to take on challenges and adapt to them. We need to play the conditions. We saw how the wicket behaved when they (SRH) batted, so we could've been much smarter in our approach."

SRH captain Kane Williamson, however, scored a quickfire 29 off 21 deliveries, stroking five boundaries - the maximum by any batsman on both sides.

The right-hander was elegant in his shotmaking, driving along the ground but his example was lost on others. MI opener Suryakumar Yadav (top-scorer with 34) displayed class but not the application to carry his team over the line.

Krunal Pandya got into the groove and then gave it away. "The need was for sensible batting, which we did not get," said the MI coach. "I don’t think we played with our heads."

Watching the collapse in rapt silence were the home fans, usually an excitable lot busy trying to catch the flying ball when their favourite batsmen cut loose. The shock defeat was also witnessed by birthday boy Sachin Tendulkar, for whom dominating the bowlers on such wickets was extra motivation.

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