Champions League 2013 October 4, 2013

IPL experience favours Mumbai Indians - Pollard

Renaldo Matadeen

Kieron Pollard believes that the semi-final clash between Mumbai Indians and Trinidad & Tobago could ultimately come down to the experience gained by the Indian side in the IPL.

Mumbai Indians booked their passage into the semis with a comprehensive win against Perth Scorchers, as a result of which, Pollard will be facing off against his T&T team-mates, who themselves come into the game on the back of a big victory against Chennai Super Kings.

"Ramdin's men know my game well but I know theirs too, so it's going to be interesting this Saturday," Pollard said. "Their batters are in form but our bowling and fielding have been disciplined. It will be a cracker."

Since joining Mumbai Indians in 2010, Pollard has gone on to become a key member of the franchise, and played an integral part in the team's Champions League triumph in 2011, as well their IPL success earlier in May.

"Four years with Mumbai Indians has been a learning experience for me," he said. "The best part is that players come and go in other teams but at Mumbai Indians, the core of the team has been same for the last four years and we have enjoyed each other's success."

Pollard also acknowledged the impact Sachin Tendulkar has had on him since he joined the team. "Sachin has helped me become a better cricketer with a lot of technical inputs. For me, it's a sheer joy watching him enjoy those gruelling training sessions even at this age. His work ethic is something that I have always respected. He's a mentor but more so, he's a good friend.

"Earlier, whenever I would come in to bat, the opposition captain would immediately bring in a spinner. That has changed now. I still get out but if the slow bowlers keep it in my arc, I am ready to hit it out of sight."

Pollard, who boasts an impressive strike rate of 149.73 in T20Is, also shrugged off claims that he was a specialist only in the shortest format of the game. "If people want to call me T20 freelancer, that's their opinion. If I try to change everything, I will be trying to change the whole world. For me, it's just a matter of what I am supposed to do and that is playing whatever format I get to play. My only priority is getting Mumbai to the CLT20 title and that's all I am focused on."

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