Why fret when you have a galaxy of stars and are spoilt for choice? But for a team which has Sachin Tendulkar, a legend of the game, the behaviour of their players leaves a jarring note. Munaf Patel’s attempt to browbeat first-class batsman Nitin Saini, who is essentially out to enjoy his moment in the limelight, did not present a pleasant picture when the two sides met in Mumbai on Sunday.
Munaf has been found guilty twice and fined by the IPL for his boorish behaviour on the field. Maybe, it is just the pressure of being the strike bowler in the team, following Lasith Malinga’s back injury, which got to him.The incident has soured the mood ahead of the game and KXIP coach-cum-skipper Adam Gilchrist is not impressed. "The repeat offenders, I think, need to be governed well," the former Australia wicketkeeping great said. "I’m happy with the way our boys handled the situation."
Munaf confronted Saini after the youngster carved him for two consecutive boundaries and the umpires intervened to prevent things from getting ugly. Even MI bowling coach, Shaun Pollock, admitted there was a need for Munaf — he also angrily took on the umpire in the game against Deccan Chargers — to calm down and “keep things in perspective”.
MI skipper Harbhajan Singh is also facing other issues. MI have tried five different openers, mainly due to Tendulkar’s injury.
Richard Levi, Tendulkar, Ambati Rayudu, T Suman, Davy Jacobs and James Franklin have all opened.