Here’s what Mumbai Indians’ players and support staff said, in interviews with the host broadcaster, after their team clinched a record fourth IPL title via a last-ball win over Chennai Super Kings in the final in Hyderabad
Kieron Pollard: These sort of games are the ones you want to perform [in], these are the games people remember. The more runs you get on the board, the pressure is going on to them [the opposition]. My aim was to stay till the end, I missed a couple of deliveries but in the end, these two guys [Jasprit Bumrah and Lasith Malinga] bowled brilliantly, taking the game away from CSK. Bumrah in the second-to-last over and then the legend himself finishing it off for us.
This season it was a total team effort. At different opportunities [different] guys stood up and really made themselves counted. We don’t have much guys at the top of the runs [charts], not much guys at the top of the wickets [charts], but in the end we are the champions.
Jasprit Bumrah, the Player of the Match: [On the penultimate ball of the 19th over, which Quinton de Kock let through for four byes:] The ball was reversing a little bit. You try to stay as calm as much as possible because finals you know, it can go to the last ball. That happened in 2017 as well. So we were just trying to keep calm, not create panic, and eventually, it worked out.
[On delivering so consistently:] As I told you, I don’t think about all those things. I just think one day at a time, one ball at a time. If you don’t think about all those extra pressure, you are much clearer, you don’t feel the pressure. So I tried to focus on that, and I tried to back myself in any situation.
Lasith Malinga: [On the last-ball slower ball to Shardul Thakur:] At that stage, if we gave one run, it would have gone into the Super Over. If I got a wicket, we’d win. I went for the win, I tried my wicket-taking option, and today it was a success.
Rohit Sharma: Throughout the tournament we’ve played some good cricket. That’s part of the reason why we qualified at the top. We spoke at the start that we need to break this tournament into halves, so the focus was on the first half, and then, once we got that momentum with us, we started focusing on every game after that. Everything fell into the plan. When it doesn’t, we know how frustrating it is, but everything we did as a team we got rewards for it. I think credit goes to the entire squad, not just the eleven players who were on the field today. We have a squad of 25 players, somebody came at some point, played a part, and even the support staff as well.
Our bowling, in this tournament, particularly was excellent. At different stages of the game, our bowlers put their hand up and brought us back into the game. Malinga, after going for so many runs in that third over, [to come back and win it in the final over] that’s what champions do, actually. He’s been doing it for many years for us, and I had a lot of confidence in him, and he was confident as well, whatever target he had [to defend], he could do it.
[On whether he thought of bowling Hardik Pandya in the 20th over:] I was thinking of it, but again, I wanted to back somebody who’s been in that situation before and done it for us, and Mali has been in that situation so many times, and he’s done it. It was not so difficult.
Hardik Pandya: Lots of people were telling us that we had already won three times, and the fourth time might be their chance. But we kept telling each other, ‘No, it would be 4-0.’ Maybe after this game, we might have to think about the league game next year. I think I’ve lost a couple of kilos today, it was that tight.
Before I made my debut, I had a Mumbai Indians wallpaper on my phone. Five years down the line, three trophies, it’s a dream [come true]. Everything is coming nice. My plan was to win this IPL and now, all the focus moves to the World Cup and I want to lift that trophy as well. I want to tick that box as well.
Mahela Jayawardene, head coach: You can’t control much from the dugout, but we had a lot of trust in the group. They never gave up. We had the game at one point when MS [Dhoni] got run out, but again Watto [Shane Watson] got those boundaries. We knew it always going to be a tricky one. Great decisions by Rohit, going back to the experienced bowlers. That’s why we wanted to defend. This is why we play the game, but we don’t want any of these games any more though.
[On Pollard’s knock:] I wanted to take a punt [on Pollard] in that situation. We lost back-to-back wickets, so I didn’t want to send Hardik. Polly [Pollard] had the experience, he has a good record against CSK as well. I think he batted beautifully. He was hitting the ball really well and he took a lot of pressure off. Big players come to the party in big games… Bumrah, Mali. Young Rahul Chahar bowled brilliantly, he came of age in this tournament. He held his nerve, he was brilliant out there, especially on a wicket where there was not much for him. The pressure he created gave us a lot of opportunities.
Sachin Tendulkar, icon: The key moment was to get Dhoni run out, but then also in patches when Bumrah came in and bowled those critical overs after Malinga had given that expensive over. Bumrah came and kind of evened that out a bit. Then again Krunal ended up giving some runs. Bumrah came back very hard. And then the last over, I think Malinga finished it off beautifully. When it comes to finals, we were thinking about the last time we played here, and we defended 129. All the games we have played here, the couple of finals, both have been the last-ball finishes and we finished them beautifully.
[On what makes Mumbai tick:] We’ve got a terrific team with experience and youngsters. Rahul Chahar stands out. Even before he had played the first game, I had kind of shared my opinion on Rahul Chahar. I thought he was just fabulous. Today, he came and bowled at a critical time, from the 6th over to the 11th-12th over, he created that pressure and bowled with a slip there and beat the bat a couple of occasions every over. I thought it was quality bowling and that’s why we have been able to perform consistently because the spinners have come and bowled well in the middle overs. Not to forget Hardik Pandya’s special batting throughout the season. There were a number of games where we were pushed in a corner and challenged; Hardik came and played some critical knocks for us.
Suryakumar Yadav: It was a perfect final, we were always wanting this to happen at the end of the season and we turned out to be the champions.
[On Mumbai’s recipe for success:] I think most importantly the processes and the routines which we follow before the tournament starts, when everyone meets and what we share together. I think that’s the key going into the tournament and winning championships. Knowing each and everyone, all the strong points and weaknesses of each and every player, I think that’s the most important thing that takes you forward and wins you titles.
Ishan Kishan: He [Bumrah] is an excellent bowler and we trust him a lot. I asked him how many overs he had. He said two, and I was pretty sure he would give just ten runs in 12 balls. So we were in the game all the time.
Shane Bond, bowling coach: Today is a culmination of a lot of hard work. I think over the course of the series we got better and better with the ball. I thought 150 was a little below par, but we knew we also had quality bowlers. When the pressure comes come on, they would deliver. Mali was sensational in that clutch moment.
Article source: http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/story/1184284.html?CMP=OTC-RSS