The game against the Rajasthan Royals was a big one for us, and everyone came to the party. We played tight cricket, the fielding and catching was good, we bowled as a unit and finished well with the bat.
The run out of Michael Lumb started off things. We had discussed how Rajasthan were vulnerable to run outs. They had suffered about 26 run outs, and we knew that if we could dry up the boundaries and apply the pressure, something would give in. We created the opportunity, and more importantly, grabbed it when it mattered.
While Dale Steyn and Jacques Kallis picked up the crucial wickets, Vinay Kumar and Pankaj Singh bowled well. Pankaj has had a good domestic season, and given his build and action, we felt he could extract a bit of extra bounce from the Jaipur pitch. Though the strip was on the slow side, Pankaj was comfortable, as it is his home ground, and he did the job.
The manner in which our Indian reserve players have come in and played a role is something that pleases me, as captain. It's not easy to be sitting on the sidelines and watching, knowing all the while that you could be called up any time. These guys have to be ready to fire when the call comes, and Pankaj showed that he was.
That said, it was a team effort. Kevin Pietersen took a smart catch to get rid of Shane Watson and Steyn got it just right against Yusuf Pathan. We had some very good plans in place for Yusuf, but the execution had to be spot on, and Steyn took care of that.
In the end they did manage to stitch together a 50-run stand, but we always knew 130 was going to be gettable. We had an eye on the run rates and approached the chase in a suitable manner.
The way KP, batting from a position where we'd lost Manish Pandey and Kallis early, took on the bowling was something commendable. Even on a slow pitch, after losing wickets, you really need to take control, and KP did that. At the end of the first six overs we had 59 on the board, the highest we've managed in this competition. Essentially, the way we took the first six overs, both with ball and bat, won us the game.
Before the match we had spoken about how we wanted our destiny to be in our hands, and not have to depend on net run rates or the results of other teams. It's an attitude that served us well, and we'll be taking it into our final league game of the season. Mumbai have been on a roll, and no game with Sachin in the opposition is an easy one. All we want to do is build on our win, and look forward with a positive attitude.