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Despite `sting operation`, focus hasn`t wavered, claims Mahela

New Delhi: A TV `sting operation` may have cast doubts over the credibility of IPL but Delhi Daredevils batsman Mahela Jayawardene said the team`s focus has not changed despite the spot-fixing allegations on some players.

No Delhi player has been named in the operation but five others have been suspended by the BCCI after they were named in the sting operation by a private TV channel for being ready to indulge in `spot-fixing`.

"We will have to wait and see. Nobody is guilty unless proved. We will have to wait for the decision after the enquiry and then only we can come to some conclusion. Right now our focus is to finish in top-2. Nothing has taken the focus away from us. Once the enquiry is over, then we can have some explanation," Jayawardene said, on the eve of match against Royal Challengers Bangalore.

Delhi are the first team to secure a berth in the play-offs but the elegant Sri Lankan batsman said the team will fight hard into the remaining matches and also refrain from drastic experimentation.

"This is something we will discuss with the management. But there won`t be much experimentation. We have been consistent with our selection and it has worked for us. There will not many changes but may be some," he said.

The Sri Lankan skipper said the team was determined to finish among top-2, to have that one extra chance to make the title-clash.

"One of our aims was to qualify for the Play-offs. And now we want to finish in top-2 to have that advantage. The next two games are important for us. There are certain areas we want to improve on," he said.

Jayawardene, though, was not worried over not-so-consistent middle-order batting. Their top-order has clicked but middle-order has struggled when exposed to pressure situation.

“If you see the top-10 batsmen in IPL are either openers or number three batsman. Naman (Ojha) played well yesterday and then Irfan (Pathan) finished the match. If they can contribute in the same vein, that`s an added advantage. So middle-order is not a concern but yes it can be handled in a better way," he said.

Jayawardene also hailed Virender Sehwag for the way he leads the side.

"He`s brilliant. I have played for the first time under him. He gives a lot of freedom and the boys have responded well. He talks to bowlers and plans well. It is tough in the middle and situation can change and he has handled that well. He has batted well also and that reflects in his captaincy. It is a happy dressing room."

Meanwhile, team`s mentor T A Sekar said they were prepared to take on big-hitting players such as Chris Gayle, Tillakaratne Dilshan and AB de Villers in Thursday`s game.

"The bowlers know what to do," he said when asked what tips he has given to his bowler to handle power-hitters in RCB ranks.

"We have already played RCB. Umesh Yadav has had a good run and Varun has comeback well from his injury. Albie Morkel has been good. We do not put pressure on our bowlers," he said

Sekar also gave a thumbs up to the current IPL format where top-2 teams get two chances to make the finals.

"The aim is to be in top two. You play good in league stage and then you have one off day and you are out of the tournament. So it is good. You get two chances to qualify for the finals."

PTI

From Zee News

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