We didn’t play quality cricket and it cost us whole season: Hardik

PTI, May 18, 2024, 8:23 AM IST

Mumbai: A dejected Hardik Pandya admitted that poor quality of cricket played by Mumbai Indians cost them the 2024 IPL season which ended in their second last place finish in three years.

The five time champions had finished last in 2022 as well.

Pandya was brought back in the MI set-up amid much fanfare but the team only won four games out of 14 under his leadership.

“It was quite difficult. We did not play good quality cricket, eventually cost us the whole season,” Pandya said after MI’s 18-run loss to Lucknow Super Giants.

“It’s a professional world. Have to always come out and put our best foot forward. But yes, as a group we could not play quality cricket or smart cricket.” As the dust settles down, he would probably dissect what went wrong.

“Too early to point out what went wrong. The whole season kind of went wrong. We can pass this game as another one (that went wrong).” LSG skipper KL Rahul, whose team also finished out of play-off zone was equally disappointed.

“Very disappointing. At the start of the season, I felt we had a very strong season and most bases covered. Couple of injuries happen but the guys who went away dented us a little bit,” Rahul said with obvious reference to country’s fastest bowler Mayank Yadav.

“We didn’t play well enough collectively and couldn’t come together as much as we wanted to. Today was the kind of game we wanted to play more when the bowlers and batters both come together,” he said.

Rahul, who is not part of the Indian team for the upcoming T20 World Cup, however, was non-committal on whether he would bat in the middle order in coming days.

“Maybe, maybe not, there’s not much T20 cricket coming up [for me] now,” he said when asked if he will think of batting in the middle order.

“It depends on where I stand and what I need to do to get back in the team, I’ll think about what the team needs,” he added.

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