Both MS Dhoni and Steve Smith are fine leaders: Stephen Fleming
“Dhoni is one of the most successful players in the last decade and he has one more chance tomorrow to prove that," Fleming said.
Published - May 21, 2017 1:06 am | Updated - May 21, 2017 1:06 am
Rising Pune Supergiant has to be the team of this season. They didn’t have the best of the starts and after what happened in the previous edition one sensed a replay could be on the cards. But Steve Smith & Co. didn’t just turn things around but turned it on its head. From being at the 7th position in IPL 2017 they will take field against the Mumbai Indians in Hyderabad to stake a claim on the title.
A lot of factors from Smith’s captaincy to youngsters like Rahul Tripathi, Jaydev Unadkat and Washington Sundar’s performance has contributed to the team’s cause. In the road to the final RPS met Mumbai Indians thrice and they had the better of the two-time champion team at all occasions. This gives them a psychological lead heading into the contest but all can be lost if the final frontier is not won.
All focus on the final
Smith also felt the final can undo all their good record against MI if they don’t perform well in the all-important match. “Yea, we can take a bit of confidence from that but in the end, final cricket comes down to that game who plays best on that day. Both the teams have played some really good cricket so far throughout the tournament and I am sure tomorrow night’s game will be a beauty,” the RPS skipper said.
He has shared the dressing room with two IPL veterans one a champion skipper and the other his companion in the last decade of IPL cricket. MS Dhoni and Stephen Fleming have played pivotal roles in Pune’s redemption and Smith acknowledged it saying, “It has been fun working with Fleming and Dhoni. We have worked very hard to come here and it is important for us to put on another good show to win the title.”
Speaking about the presence of Smith and MS Dhoni in the setup, the RPS’ head coach Fleming said, “Dhoni is one of the most successful players in the last decade and he has one more chance tomorrow to prove that. Both (Smith and Dhoni) are fine leaders with their fine performances. They have been outstanding so far and have had great influence on the younger players in the team.”
As a coach, Fleming feels that finals are the right occasion for someone like him to sit back and enjoy since there isn’t much to analyse if things weren’t going right for them, they won’t be playing in the final.
“The work gets done at the start of the tournament and at the auction,” says Fleming. “If you’re lucky enough to find the right combination in time, then it pretty much rolls along itself. The finals are the ideal time where you sit back because if you’re in the finals things must’ve gone right at the start and we don’t have to start over analysing again by making changes as it might not be beneficial to the team,” he added.