As they get ready to clash with the most consistent team in the IPL semifinals on Wednesday, Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper Anil Kumble on Tuesday said his team is not thinking about the success story of Mumbai Indians instead they are concentrating on executing their own plans.
Both the teams have beaten each other in the league stage and Kumble says he would look at that win and their experience of playing IPL semifinals before for confidence.
“We would like to take confidence of the first game we played against Mumbai in Mumbai. Also the experience of having played in the semi-finals before in the IPL would probably help us.
“We would like to concentrate on what skills we can execute and how well we can execute our skills rather than worry about what has happened in the previous game or how Mumbai has come into the semi-finals,” Kumble told reporters on the match eve.
The skipper was happy with the way his team has performed so far and said the team which will negotiate pressure in better way would win the trophy.
“When we set out, the goal was to get into the semi-finals. We have achieved that. We need to win two games from here to take the trophy. The team certainly deserves to be in this position. I am really looking forward to the game.
“As an experienced group we are aware of the responsibilities and pressures of being part of the semi finals. From here on whoever plays well on that particular day will go on to win,” he said.
Kumble said it was quite an achievement for any team to play consistently well over six weeks.
“It’s nice to be in this situation where you are in the semi finals of a big tournament. It’s not easy when the tournament is played over six weeks and to be consistent and to qualify. We knew we had to win at least seven games. “(It?s) not easy to do that over a period of six weeks,” Kumble said.
He though was disappointed on losing the home advantage as the match was shifted to Navi Mumbai due to security concerns in Bangalore.
“It’s a bit disappointing we had to shift. (It was) not in our control. As players we have to play the game. The home crowd would have been great for us. It was a home advantage.”
But Kumble rubbished reports that foreign players in his team had to be coaxed by him to play in Saturday’s tie against the same opponents after the bomb blasts near Chinnaswamy stadium on Saturday.
“I did not have to persuade anyone to play in Bangalore.”
Kumble agreed that Sachin Tendulkar was a big threat to their chances but said the rival captain was not the only obstacle before them.
“Obviously Sachin is a big player whether he’s playing for India or Mumbai or Mumbai Indians. Any team which has Sachin Tendulkar as an opposition looks at getting him out cheaply.
“Hopefully we would be able to do that. We have seen his ability not just as a captain but also as a batsman for Mumbai Indians through the tournament. We are aware of that.
“But it’s important to execute the plans and ensure we are on top for 40 overs of the game rather than just one part of it. So we would like to concentrate on the team rather than on one particular individual,” Kumble emphasised.
Kumble felt pressure would be more on Mumbai following the shifting of the two semi-final matches to Navi Mumbai.
“Mumbai would be playing at home. They probably did not expect to play the semi-finals at home. In that sense the pressure is probably on them. It’s a must win situation for all.”
He also expected the wicket to be a sporting one. “This is a fresh track and not many games have been played. Only two games have been played here and tomorrow it’s the third game. I’m sure it will be a good sporting wicket.
“For bowlers who can bend their back, there’s a bit in it. For batsmen, it (the ball) will come on nicely as well.
It will be a good game of cricket and hopefully we can execute whatever we decide,” Kumble said.
Kumble did not dwell much on the allegations that IPL matches may be fixed.
“I can’t answer much. What concerns me is what happens on the pitch. As cricketers our role is to ensure that we play to our potential and play good cricket,” he said.