Mumbai Indians head coach Mahela Jayawardene believes there is no need to panic over the meager spots for their openers Rohit Sharma and Ishan Kishan, and says the two batters should be supported even as the five-time champion sets an unwanted record in the Indian Premier League has racked up the most defeats in their first 7 matches.
Mumbai Indians have slipped to their 7th consecutive defeat in IPL 2022, thanks to a disciplined bowling effort from Chennai Super Kings and a closing masterclass from MS Dhoni at DY Patil Stadium in Mumbai on Thursday.
Mumbai got off to the worst possible start in their highly anticipated clash against Chennai when left arm pacer Mukesh Choudhary Rohit Sharma and Ishan Kishan ducked in the first over. Mukesh got the skipper on a soft layoff when Rohit broke one straight to center and fell for a 2-ball duck. On the other hand, Ishan played the wrong line to a full outswinger and saw his off-stump uprooted.
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“It went up and down a bit, to be honest. Ishan hit really well in the first few games. And then a bit of a slide. Ro hit the ball really well, he gets good starts. 15-20 runs, he looks good, and then he hasn’t been able to convert,” Jayawardene told the press after MI’s defeat to CSK.
“When that happens, when you get out early, you feel like nothing is wrong. I’ve been a batter and that’s part of the game. You know I’ll be worried if they don’t hit the ball right or if they don’t have the confidence, but they’ve both hit well there and in the nets.
“You have to support the ability and give them confidence. These are guys who have played a lot of IPL games and understand what needs to be done. It will change. Come in every day, go through the processes and work hard.”
While MI’s bowling was ordinary, the lack of runs of the highest order has hurt them in IPL 2022. Captain Rohit has endured an extended lean period, scoring 114 runs in 7 matches at an average of 16.29. Rohit set an unwanted record on Thursday, claiming the most ducks for a bait in the IPL.
Ishan, on the other hand, has failed to live up to its huge price tag despite starting IPL 2022 with 2 consecutive fifties. He has made 191 runs in 7 games with scores of 0, 13, 3, 26, 14 after his two fifties.
Skipper Rohit admitted he was unable to put his finger on MI’s batting woes, but stressed the need to step up and perform to ensure MI finished the tournament on a high. With 7 defeats in as many games, the five-time champions are almost out of the playoffs.
“It’s hard to put your finger on something, but we don’t start the match well. When you lose fast wickets, you always play the catching game,” said Rohit.