‘We relied heavily on our international players’
Rhodes highlighted the domestic players’ non-performance as the primary reason for their dismal show . “You need contributions from the local players. Last year, at times, we fell down (on that count). We relied heavily on our international players, reports HT Correspondent.cricket Updated: Feb 27, 2010 23:58 IST
The Indian Premier League, it seems, is getting its act together, at least when it comes to optimum squad size. After receiving feedback from most teams about ‘crowded dressing rooms’, IPL authorities asked all eight franchises to restrict their playing squad to 23 for the third edition, which starts from March 12.
Mumbai Indians’ fielding coach Jonty Rhodes welcomed the move. “The difficult thing from a coaching point of view is having a squad of 30. How do you keep everyone practising and in form? There’s not enough room in the dressing room area,” Rhodes said at the Cricket Club of India.
“Fortunately, since it is being played in India, in case of an emergency, a replacement is a phone call away. Most of the players will tell you that it’s difficult to have 30 players for a meeting.”
Despite being the most expensive IPL team, the Mumbai Indians have failed to make it to the top four in the first two editions. After finishing fifth in the first year, they finished second from bottom last year.
Rhodes highlighted the domestic players’ non-performance as the primary reason for their dismal show . “You need contributions from the local players. Last year, at times, we fell down (on that count). We relied heavily on our international players. Abhishek Nayar played some fantastic knocks towards the end. But not enough of the younger players performed.”
Rhodes, however, observed remarkable improvement in the work ethic during the ongoing camp. He thought there was a “50 percent” improvement in overall fielding standards and singled out Jaydev Shah, Saurabh Tiwary and Ajinkya Rahane for praise.