Batting sensation Shreyas Iyer was jubilant after finishing as the leading scorer in the Ranji Trophy this season and helping Mumbai win their 41st crown in the country’s premier domestic cricket tournament.
"You can't express this feeling at the moment; you always dream of winning the Ranji Trophy.
“All of us worked really hard for this, and it's been amazing,” he said, after Mumbai beat Saurashtra in the final by an innings and 21 runs, in Pune, on Friday.
The 21-year-old batsman, who scored 117 in Mumbai’s first innings, added: “Last season I scored 810, and this season I just decided I would break that mark. I surpassed that total and it got to 1300 runs; it's an amazing feeling!"
Asked what he did differently this season, Iyer said: "I think I play each and every ball on its merit, I don't decide whether to hit this ball or not. The pressure situation really gets me going. I would really like to thank the team management, they have given me a lot of freedom. It was a bowler-friendly wicket and it was seaming a bit".
Meanwhile, Saurashtra captain Jaydev Shah rued missed chances in the game.
"It was very disappointing. Catches win matches, and we missed two important opportunities. But my team has done really well, from Plate we came to Elite, and we have come up to the final. Siddhesh Lad's last-wicket partnership gave them a very crucial lead. We have been in the final two times, and we will try our best and we hope that next year we will win the final. It's been a fantastic season for us. Everyone has supported each other," said Shah.
Siddhesh Lad, who started the day on 22, ended up with a crucial 88 and took Mumbai to 371 from 268 for nine with the help of number 11 Balwinder Sandhu (34 not out). Lad's innings comprised eight fours and five sixes.
"We have worked very hard for this, starting from the off-season camp, and yes, we will party hard tonight," Lad said after the win.
Mumbai wicket-keeper batsman and skipper Aditya Tare, who ended with most dismissals (48) this season, said the victory was a result of total team effort.
"It still hasn't sunk in, but it's a great feeling. Last season, when we lost in the semi-finals, I felt we had the ability to beat any team, and we have proved it this year. We have a lot of history, but most of the guys are winning it for the first time. I'm really glad this young team has won the Ranji Trophy. All the games there have been match-winners, but not just one or two players," said Tare.