Pune Warriors v Chennai Super Kings, IPL 2013, Pune May 1, 2013

Batting collapses a concern - Rahul Sharma

ESPNcricinfo staff

Pune Warriors legspinner Rahul Sharma said that instability in the batting order has been one of the main reasons for the team's poor performance in IPL 2013.

"I think we are not clicking together," Rahul told IPLT20.com after Chennai Super Kings beat Warriors by 37 runs. "It is a new team and the captain is also new. He is captaining well, making good changes while bowling but the batting order is not getting set and the middle order is collapsing."

Sharma also conceded that the Warriors bowlers had given away too many runs towards the end of the innings, allowing Super Kings to reach 164 for 3 after they were 103 for 3 in the 16th over.

"Since we had a good batting wicket, the plan was to not give the batsmen too much room because they do have a lot of hard-hitters lower down like MS Dhoni, Dwayne Bravo, Albie Morkel," Sharma said. "We wanted to restrict them to as less as possible, like 140 or 150, but then according to me we gave about 20 runs more."

Super Kings batsman S Badrinath credited the side's sharp fielding for the win. "I think our fielding was tremendous," Badrinath said. "Suresh Raina and Albie Morkel effected run outs. Whenever we have looked for breaks, our fielding has pulled it up. I think that is a big plus with our side. I don't think you can find any weak fielder on the ground so that is something we work hard on as well."

Badrinath, who was involved in a 75-run stand for the third wicket with Raina, said the batsmen had a plan to steady the innings before the big-hitting batsmen took charge in the final overs.

"We assessed the wicket to be a bit slow and low," Badrinath said. "It was not easy to play shots so Raina and I decided to stay on for a while and take our time. Even if it was a run a ball it was fine, but the idea was not to lose wickets and to keep rotating the strike. We knew that with the power hitters behind us we could make up. Keeping wickets in hand was the key for us."

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