Mumbai Indians coach John Wright on Friday said senior batsman Sachin Tendulkar‘s experience of playing on the slow and turning Feroze Shah Kotla track will play a crucial role in tomorrow’s semi-final clash against Trinidad and Tobago here.
Wright said the batting great is enjoying his cricket at the moment and still loves to contribute with the bat on big occasions.
“Sachin is fine and looks in good touch with the bat. He is hitting the ball beautifully at the moment. Like in the last match against Perth Scorchers, he had to go for it right from the start…Twenty20 is like that. He is a quality player and his experience is important for us on a slow and spinning wicket,” said Wright at the post-match press conference.
“Sachin is just enjoying his cricket. He is excited to be in the Champion League Twenty20 semifinal. He likes playing on these big occasions,” said the 59-year-old Wright.
Tendulkar hasn’t been in the best of form lately with scores of 15, 5 and 0 to show for in the ongoing tournament.
Asked what difference he sees in the Tendulkar of today from the days when he was the coach of the Indian team, the New Zealander said, “The only difference is now he has more runs in his bank.”
Wright admitted his players were under a lot of pressure in their last league game against Scorchers and nobody gave them a chance to overhaul the 149-run victory target in 14.2 overs to qualify for the semi-finals.
“It was a big game for us. We were under a lot of pressure. Our boys are used to play such crunch matches. Not many people gave us the chance to knock off those runs but we did our job.”
Talking about tomorrow’s game, Wright said they would look to apply “pressure” on T&T’s front-line bowler and mystery spinner Sunil Narine.
“We would look to apply pressure on our opposition. We are hungry to do well again. We have a good batting line up.
We have some outstanding players of spin bowling and we are not thinking about any special plans against Narine. We have played against him before and we will look to put pressure on him. I want my team to play aggressively without any doubts in their mind,” he said.
Wright, however, demanded a better fielding show from his team.
“I want a better fielding performance from my team. We need to improve upon that.”
The coach also praised Rohit Sharma and said he has evolved in the role of a skipper.
“He has fitted in very quickly, leading the side by example with his batting. He is tactically good. I am happy that a guy from Mumbai is leading the franchise. It was a fantastic piece of batting from Rohit in the last match,” he said.