Hyderabad, May 11 (IANS) Mumbai Indians (MI) will aim for their fourth Indian Premier League (IPL) title when they take on defending champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in the final of the tournament, here on Sunday, as MI skipper Rohit Sharma feels both the team’s past performances would not be a factor.
With the contest on a neutral venue, Rohit said the venue factor would not matter as the two teams had played a number of games in this ground.
Addressing the pre-match press conference, Rohit said: “Hyderabad is a neutral venue for both the teams. Both teams have played over here in the past. I don’t think the venue will play a major factor. Being Indians, we’ve played at Hyderabad. It’s important for us to pass the information to our overseas guys. We had a good outing when we last played here.”
“It will be important to assess the pitch as soon as we get in. Whether we’re batting first or bowling first, it will be crucial to know what’s a par score,” he remarked.
Speaking on his plans for the much awaited clash, the Mumbai skipper said: “For us, as a team, it’s important to focus on the game and play it. We won’t be bothered by the past — who has won how many trophies will not matter. We just want to play good cricket tomorrow (Sunday).”
“Focus will be on how we play as a team. That’s what we’ve done throughout the season. Tomorrow will be no different,” he said.
When asked how it feels to be called as one of the most successful IPL teams, Rohit said: “Winning the fourth title or being the most successful team doesn’t matter. For us what matters is — how we can improve as a team and move forward.”
Rohit also said he and the team management had spoken to players and had asked them not to get too emotional about the final and treat it like a normal game.
On the secret behind Mumbai’s success over the years, the skipper said it all happened as his players understand what they need to do as a team and as individuals as well.
“There’s hype around an MI vs CSK game because both teams have won championships. For us, every team is a threat. We understand the importance of being good enough on one particular day,” he said.
Rohit said both Jasprit Bumrah and Hardik Pandya were fit for the final. “Jasprit is someone who likes to play games to make sure he’s in rhythm. Our physios and trainers have monitored him well. We’ve had no issues with both Bumrah and Hardik,” he said.
MI coach Mahela Jayawardene also praised Hardik saying, “fe has set high standards for himself and if he doesn’t achieve it, he tends to work around it a lot. We’re glad to have him.”
“Three years ago, Hardik was a talented cricketer making his way in the @IPL. He’s learnt a lot over the years. He’s a confident player,” he added.
Jayawardene also said what worked for CSK and MI was that they both kept their core players going.