After Mumbai won their 41st Ranji Trophy title on Friday, Sachin Tendulkar, being a former Mumbai player, expressed his happiness over the fact that the team earned the victory sans their ace players Rohit Sharma and Ajinkya Rahane being effectively a part of the squad. Mumbai, based on their raw talents, won the latest edition of the most important Indian domestic battle defeating Saurashtra by an innings and 21 runs. The stars for the series have been Shreyas Iyer and Siddhesh Lad and the two did not disappoint in the final match as well as Iyer scored 117 and Lad added 88 runs while Dhawal Kulkarni and Shardul Thakur remained the heroes with the ball. READ: Shreyas Iyer proves mettle behind Mumbai’s 41st Ranji title; pushes case for home Tests
Talking to Mid-day, the maestro mentioned the players who impressed him with tier performance. “There are three or four individuals, who have done well. Shreyas (Iyer) and Suryakumar Yadav, Shardul (Thakur), Dhawal (Kulkarni) has also bowled beautifully in the first innings (of the final). All individuals have contributed at the right time, like Shreyas scored the big hundred yesterday (on Thursday), and today (Siddhesh) Lad played one of the most important innings of his life. That partnership between him (Lad) and (Balwinder Singh) Sandhu changed Saurashtra’s mindset and ours as well. Till then, we were going neck-to-neck. That last partnership took the game away from them (Saurashtra). We started dictating terms thereon. They started feeling the heat.”
Mumbai, however, did not have a very good start losing and pointing that out, Tendulkar said, “It’s a long season and there would be a few hiccups. Wake-up calls, as we say. That’s fine. Good teams always rise through it. We have the firepower to do that. Youngsters have tasted success and they have realised that if you play as a team, the game becomes really enjoyable. Victory is the icing on the cake. For the whole season they were taking gradual steps towards the final destination. Today, they reached their final destination, but those gradual steps were important.”
“This victory has shown our bench strength. We didn’t have Rohit Sharma and Ajinkya Rahane, two key players. (However) without them we won, which shows Mumbai cricket’s bench strength. The youngsters contributed in a big way. They have given us many reasons to smile,” Tendulkar opined on the young strength of the team.
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