Everything went according to plan: Rohit Sharma

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Kolkata, May 25 (IANS) An ecstatic Mumbai Indians skipper Rohit Sharma, who held aloft the Indian Premier League (IPL) trophy again after 2013 at the Eden Gardens here, said the final went exactly the way they had planned.

Mumbai defeated arch-rivals Chennai Super Kings (CSK) by 41 runs on Sunday night.

“Everything went according to plan. We wanted to be aggressive, play the cricket we are known to play. At the start of the tournament this was something which wasn’t happening. We saw the guys playing a lot more freely now,” Rohit said.

The 28-year-old said his side went out there to bat regularly as always and at the same time be a little aggressive to take the game to the opposition.

“The average score here has been 170 plus. We just wanted to bat normally because we know at Eden the wicket is always good. It is important to have wickets in hand to build partnerships and get the momentum. Me and Lendl (Simmons) got a very good partnership and then (Kieron) Pollard and (Ambati) Rayadu finished off really well,” said Rohit, referring to Pollard and Rayadu’s partnership which yielded 71 runs from 40 balls.

The right-handed batsman added that he has been immensely supported by former Australia captain and Mumbai head coach Ricky Ponting, who has helped him enhance his captaincy skills.

“As a captain I keep things simple, stick to my strengths and listen to myself a lot in the field. Ponting has played a huge part as he has come and helped me in my captaincy,” said Rohit.

“He has been such a wonderful skipper for Australia and he brings that experience with him. In 2013 too when we won the title, he was guiding the team. Sometimes things weren’t going as planned and as a leader of the pack I had to stay calm, so it feels good that all the strategies and planning finally paid off.”

The Nagpur-born said it was a good toss to lose to CSK captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni.

“As a team we like batting first and it was a good toss to lose. When MS decided to bowl, I was kind of happy inside. Obviously it was the big game and we wanted to put runs on the board and put pressure on the opposition and that is what happened,” said Rohit.

The top-order batsman also praised the efforts of Dhoni.

“He is a champion batsman. There is a certain way he goes about his batting, he has been a match-winner for CSK and India. But today the situation wasn’t right, he would have expected more from his openers. It is always difficult when you are losing wickets and chasing 12 runs an over, it is not easy for any batsman in the world,” he said.

Questioned about the turning point for them in the tournament, Rohit said: “We treated every game as a final.”

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