Mumbai Indians’ director of cricket operations Zaheer Khan is trying to come to terms with the “unusual” as his side grapples with an unending lean patch that has seen the five-time champions lose seven matches on the trot and are currently placed 10th and last on the IPL points table.
As the Rohit Sharma-led side prepares to take on Lucknow Super Giants at the Wankhede Stadium later on Sunday, the former India pace bowler said that being put in such a “tough spot” had also brought several learnings for the team as it tries to correct its course.
“Not every day is going to be your day, but you go out there and give your best. The same individuals have been going for runs, and the same individuals will come out there and give the best performance for you,” Zaheer said.
“That is something the game of cricket teaches you. The team sport dynamic is like that. So you have to have that faith in each and every individual. And when I’m looking at this squad, I have faith in each and every individual’s ability to go out there and win games of cricket. It’s not happened for us so far in the season and you don’t often see this kind of a season.
“You learn with every match; you learn with every season. This season that way has been a learning for us, in terms of seeing what we can do when we are in a situation like this. You often speak about the losing momentum and the winning momentum, but at times things get really, really tough. That’s something which we have seen for ourselves this season. And that’s something which we have to accept.”
Zaheer categorically said that the string of losses won’t mean he starts losing faith in underperforming individuals.
“That doesn’t mean that I’m going to start doubting an individual. I’m going to back them through and through. And you will see that in the season as well. Like I said earlier, it’s about taking one game at a time, and putting out there the team that is going to be ready to fight, and fight till the last ball.”