Skilled middle-order helps, however we all the time look to get good begins: Quinton De Kock

Dubai, October 30

Mumbai Indians opener Quinton De Kock says having an experienced and strong middle-order is always a plus for any team but it does not make the job of the openers easy since they are responsible for team’s good starts.

Table-toppers Mumbai Indians, who have already made it to the play-offs, have a strong middle order with the likes of Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard and Krunal Pandya in the ranks.

Asked whether an experienced middle-order helps him to be aggressive, De Kock said, “Having an experienced middle order, just in general helps out in any situation. I wouldn’t say it changes our mind-set up front. We always try and look to get off to the best start possible, whether they’re there or not.”

“Obviously knowing that they are behind you, the likes of SKY (Surya), Polly (Pollard), Hardik (Pandya), when you are out there, you just bat to the situation and if you’re still lucky enough to be out there batting with them, it’s just important you end up giving them strike because they’re the bigger strikers of the ball, so yeah…,” said the South African ahead of the team’s clash against Delhi Capitals.

De Kock said his batting approach remained the same, while batting with Rohit Sharma or now with young Ishan Kishan. The skipper is recovering from a left-leg hamstring and has missed the last three games.

“Not much has changed, to be honest. Me and Ishan have a good understanding just as me and Rohit have a good understanding. Ishan’s young and upcoming and very talented, so for him to show his flair is really nice to see. (He) plays a lot of shots and sometimes it can help me.

“When I’m not going, he ends up taking all the pressure off me. That’s a pretty good thing in a partnership, especially up front there,” he added.

De Kock conceded that initially he made a couple of mistakes but got going once he found rhythm.

“I knew I was batting well in the nets. (There were) just a couple of silly mistakes in the first bit of the tournament. (There is) nothing that can’t be fixed, (it’s) just a mental thing.”

De Kock, who is the leading run-scorer for his franchise, insisted that the team’s approach for the last two games would remain the same despite having made it to the play-offs.

“I’m not a part of that thinking group but if I had to take a guess, we’d like to try and finish in the top two. That’s our number one goal, so the next game is also as important as the last one. That’s the goal ahead of us as of now,” he said. PTI

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