MI embarks on a welcome six-day breather

After a comfortable win on Sunday to improve its position in the IPL after nine games, Mumbai Indians gets a six-day break from the event, signifying a pause from incessant travelling to meet schedules.

Mumbai Indians has played nine games in 23 days, the most by any team so far.   -  Vivek Bendre

The Indian Premier League has emerged as a tournament that everyone, excluding cricketers, love to hate. When it comes to the participating cricketers, they dislike the constant travelling over seven weeks of the tournament. But more than cribbing about it, most professional cricketers have seen it as a challenge to keep the intensity going despite being constantly on the road.

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Take this, for example. Mumbai Indians has played nine games, the most for an IPL team so far, in the first 23 days. All of its four home games were broken with at least one away game in between. That has resulted in them having had as many travel days as match-days.

Finally, the team will get a six-day break starting Monday before it returns to action on Sunday in Visakhapatnam, its forced home for the remainder of the tournament. No wonder then that the camp was delighted to have gone into the break with five wins under its belt.

“Absolutely, we are happy, considering the way we started. The first five games, I think we only won two and lost three, and then it was up and down. Now the graph is going up, which is good to see,” captain Rohit Sharma said after playing a match-winning unbeaten innings of 85 that fashioned Mumbai Indians’ win against Rising Pune Supergiants on Sunday night.

'There and thereabouts'

"This tournament is too unpredictable and anything can happen on any given day. It has always been like that, except for Gujarat [Lions], they are the ones who are sitting pretty, comfortably at the top of the table. Other than that I think the teams are just there and thereabouts," Rohit said.

With a six-day break – a rarity – in the offing, the Mumbai Indians management has given a three-day break to all the members of the contingent. While most domestic cricketers have opted to spend time with family, the overseas bunch has flown to some of the popular holiday destinations. Rohit hoped the break would re-energise the players as the league goes towards its back end.

“We've played nine games now, we've got a good six-seven days off now, I'm sure the guys will refresh. Some of the guys are taking their time off, going to different cities, which will be good,” Sharma said.

“We get together on the 5th in Mumbai and then we’ll see what we need to do as a team. It's good to get a little time away from cricket and get your mind refreshed and come back as a fresher unit.”

If the revitalised Mumbai Indians outfit continues to be as impressive as it was on Sunday, then it could well find itself in the Playoffs for the seventh edition in succession.

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