Wright counting on Tendulkar's experience in CLT20 semi-final vs T&T
Mumbai Indians coach John Wright feels Sachin Tendulkar's experience of playing on the slow and turning Feroze Shah Kotla track will play a crucial role in Saturday’s Champions League T20 semi-final against Trinidad and Tobago.
Wright said the batting great 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 on Friday.
"Sachin is just enjoying his cricket. He is excited to be in the Champion League Twenty20 semi-final. He likes playing on these big occasions," said the 59-year-old former India coach.
Image: Sachin Tendulkar
Poor show so far
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 replied: "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 and 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,” he said.
Image: Sachin Tendulkar
Special plans against Narine
Talking about Saturday’s game, Wright said the team is looking 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.
Image: Sunil Narine
Rohit is leading the side by example
Wright, however, demanded better fielding from his team.
"I want a better fielding performance from my team. We need to improve upon that."
The coach also praised Rohit Sharma, saying he has evolved in the role of 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.
Image: Rohit Sharma