Mumbai: Mumbai Indians will wait until Wednesday before deciding whether all-rounder Kieron Pollard, recovering from a shoulder injury, could take the field against Royal Challengers Bangalore in an IPL clash at the Wankhede Stadium.
"Pollard has put himself through the paces in the nets (today). You cannot rush shoulder injuries. We will see how he feels tomorrow. We will be as patient as we can, he knows the best," team mentor Shaun Pollock told reporters at the pre-match media conference.
Pollard hurt his right shoulder while fielding in the away game against the Delhi Daredevils on April 27 and missed the subsequent two closely fought matches against Pune Warriors (May 3) and holders Chennai Super Kings (on May 6), both won by the Harbhajan Singh-led squad.
Pollock conceded a defeat against the Super Kings, that was averted when new recruit Dwayne Smith slammed a six and two fours off the last three balls to secure a sensational two-wicket win, would have been a huge setback to Mumbai Indians` hopes.
"It was important that we bounced back and ended up on the winning side. Having laid the foundation, we should have cruised to victory. And if we had lost, it would have been a big blow, but we showed the character.
"We have won the last four games against them (CSK) and we are happy with our performance. We had won the (last) game first, lost it and again won the game (on Sunday). It`s important to win T20 games," said the former South African captain and premier fast bowler.
Pollock said it was satisfying to see Mumbai Indians` batting unit click in the last game.
"It`s nice to see our batting unit click in the last game. And we can use this as a foundation going forward," said Pollock about the big partnership between Tendulkar and Sharma after a solid opening stand between Tendulkar and James Franklin.
Pollock was happy to take on two other big teams, RCB and Kolkata Knight Riders, in home and away matches in a short period of time.
"It will be nice to focus on the energies of these two teams. It`s a nice opp for us to know the strengths and weaknesses. We are in a good position on the log (table). Five games left and a lot of cricket to be played, but we are obviously focused on tomorrow`s match," he said.
MI clash with RCB tomorrow and then on May 14 at Bangalore and with KKR on May 12 at the Eden Gardens and here on May 16.
Pollock was of the opinion that very soon rules would be framed by the authorities to help bowlers against the switch-hits used by batsmen like A B de Villiers, Kevin Pieternsen and Robin Peterson to devastating effect when asked how a bowler can cope up with such type of batting.
"It`s seriously difficult when you see some of the shots played these days. As a bowler you have to be smart on your feet. You have to adjust if a batsman is trying to change his stance, but it has become difficult, switch hits and everything that goes on.
As a bowler you have to sometimes take it on the chin, and try to bowl your best delivery. We tell our bowlers to commit to what they bowl 100 per cent. I would not be surprised if by the next year or so, there`s something that goes in the bowlers` favour (on switch-hits). I am sure there would be something going in the bowlers` favour eventually," he said.
Pollock also said that the bowlers have become wiser with so many T20 games being played, apart from IPL.
"T20 cricket is dominated by batsmen - particularly in games where pitches are batting-friendly but bowlers understand what is required of them. They have picked up new skills, developed slower balls," he said.