McClenaghan: Long way to go for play-offs

Mumbai Indians recorded its sixth Indian Premier League win on the trot this season on Saturday, but fast bowler Mitchell McClenaghan chose not to look as far ahead as the play-offs.

Mitchell McClenaghan took 3 for 24 in his four overs.   -  Vivek Bendre

Mumbai Indians recorded its sixth Indian Premier League win on the trot this season on Saturday, but fast bowler Mitchell McClenaghan chose not to look as far ahead as the play-offs.

McClenaghan played a crucial role in Mumbai’s 14-run victory over Delhi Daredevils last night, by grabbing three wickets at the Wankhede stadium here. “It’s a long way to go (to reach play-offs). We have got a very liberal management and a very liberal team. So, fresh start every time, planning process is injected at the same time. Same routine. It’s important that we do not get too high or two low, just stay consistent because there is ups and downs in T20 cricket,” he said at the post match conference.

After Saturday’s win, Mumbai has 12 points from seven matches and has consolidated its top spot. While defending a modest total, Mumbai’s bowlers stuck to their plan and bowled with control, the Kiwi fast bowler said. “Obviously, you have to take wickets upfront. The message was very clear, just do our things. When you think of a sub-par score on a pretty good wicket, the team insists you to go out and be too aggressive with the ball and make things happen from the outset.

“We worked very hard with Bondy (Shane Bond, bowling coach), our analyst, (coach) Mahela (Jayawardene) to what plans in place (sic) and we stuck to our plans. We bowled with control, but still with a nice presence,” McClenaghan said when asked what was the team’s approach defending 142 on the board.

‘Confidence, but not arrogance’

Asked if it was the most pleasing win for the side so far, he said, “We have bowled in some absolutely cracking games. It’s been so many games where it may not look like we are going to win, but we showed a lot of maturity, all the young guys showed maturity in other games and the big players like Kieron Pollard standing up in few games. It is a nice sense of confidence, but not arrogance, which is very nice in a group like this, because you know you can back the skills of the boy next to you and you are going to know that he is going to give his 100 per cent.”

McClenaghan admitted the dew factor did not play a part in the game and was lesser compared to other games. “Thankfully, there was not any dew as it has been in probably the first games over here. So, slower balls came into reckoning a little bit more. As we saw from the crowd’s reaction, it can be incredibly tough to restrict guys in chasing. So, thankfully, it will stay like this a little longer and provide an even contest,” he said.