Rohit praises Malinga for match-winning performance

Lasith Malinga

Mumbai Indians skipper Rohit Sharma on Saturday heaped praise on pacer Lasith Malinga for keeping things simple enroute his match-winning performance against Sunrisers Hyderabad in their Indian Premier League (IPL) encounter.

Opting to bat first, home side Mumbai Indians posted 157/8 in 20 overs. Later on, Malinga with match-winning figures of 4-1-23-4, well supported by his teammates Mitchell McClenaghan and Jagadeesha Suchith, restricted Hyderabad to 137/8 in 20 overs. Malinga was awarded the man of the match.

“Earlier, I had said about Malinga, he is just one game away from a magical performance. He is such an experienced bowler. He has done it over and over again for Sri Lanka and Mumbai over the years,” Rohit said at the post-match press conference.

“There is a lot of expectations from Malinga. He keeps it very simple. He comes and bowls those yorkers. Whatever he does the best he keeps doing that. I even had a lot of confidence even when he was not bowling well. This is the confidence he was looking for. Today (Saturday) was the perfect platform for him,” he said.

With this victory, the 2013 IPL champions registered their second win of the season from seven games. Rohit said both the fast bowlers and spinners were instrumental and bowled according to the plan.

“The fast bowlers, Malinga, McClenaghan, Vinay Kumar and spinners Suchith, Harbhajan Singh bowled really well according to the plan. It was pleasing to see the way they bowled. It made things easy for me as a skipper,” Rohit said.

Asked if there was something the team needs to improve from here, he said: “I think our batting needs to improve more. I don’t think there was anything special for the bowlers on the pitch. 157 was not a decent score as far as I think.”

“We could have done and put a bit more runs on the board. Especially in the middle overs, we lost a few wickets. I won’t say it’s a concern but while hitting boundaries and sixes one may get out. We just need to take positives from this game and go ahead,” Rohit said.