Ranji Trophy 2010-11, Super League December 30, 2010

'Mumbai were complacent and arrogant' - Jaffer

ESPNcricinfo staff

Wasim Jaffer, the Mumbai captain, has admitted that his team were complacent and arrogant in their Ranji Trophy quarter-final against Rajasthan, who were promoted from the Plate League. Rajasthan knocked out the defending champions, bowling them out for 252 and then surging to 589 on the back of three centuries. Jaffer, however, denied that Mumbai had taken Rajasthan lightly. "It is very shocking indeed when I look back. They (Rajasthan) are professional players and have come up the hard way," Jaffer told DNA. "In fact they were on par with some of the Elite Division teams. But we never expected that this would happen. We were a bit complacent and arrogant too."

The conditions were helpful for the fast bowlers on the opening day, Jaffer said, and he felt that bowling first would have been the correct decision. Mumbai, however, opted to bat, and seamer Pankaj Singh ran through the line-up to skittle them out for a below-par score. "There are no ifs and buts. We have always batted first whenever we won the toss and we usually put up a big score. We don't normally field first unless the pitch is really green. Even in last year's final in Mysore, we batted first. But I would admit that we did not bat well and 250 certainly was not enough. We had recovered from tough situations before, but this time we couldn't."

Jaffer blamed Mumbai's early demise this season on his batsmen throwing away their wickets after getting starts. "You could see that throughout the tournament, runs were scored but then they were not converted into big scores. Against Railways, (Ajinkya) Rahane scored 94 but he did not see the team through, and the rest of the batsmen had to rescue us. In this match too, he and (Abhishek) Nayar scored 60, but they could not get big scores, which would have helped us. The lack of conversion was one of the reasons for our loss."

Despite the core players like Jaffer, Rahane, Nayar, Rohit Sharma, Ajit Agarkar, Iqbal Abdulla, and Ramesh Powar playing most games, Mumbai tried out 23 players in all during their eight Ranji games, and Jaffer felt that they lacked bench strength. "We don't have suitable fast bowlers who can replace Dhawal (Kulkarni), Ajit or Aavishkar (Salvi) when they are injured. We also need to have a back-up of good spinners. Batting is another area where we need bench strength. Players have come in but none of them have impressed in the given opportunities. You have to at least score a hundred or a double to cement your place instead of 30s or 50s."

Not making even the semi-finals is a huge letdown for the 39-time champions, who take immense pride in their Ranji record, and Jaffer said that it hurt to be out of the tournament "so early." "Every year our aim is to win the title, nothing less than that. Everyone was confident from the staff to the team management. But when you are playing the knockout stage you may have one bad session or bad day and you have to deal with that. However, we could not overcome that this time."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on January 6, 2011, 13:54 GMT

    @We_Win_All : That's just one side of the story. In last year's final many crucial decisions went against Mumbai as well. It was not as if Mumbai had placed those umpires there. And as for misbehaviour even some of the Karnataka players copped the fine together with the Mumbai ones. And if I remember correctly Karnataka was also accused of manipulating the pitch by starting the 5th day late so that the dew factor diminishes.

    As for your dream Karnataka vs Mumbai match, there is a fat chance as Karnataka reaches the final only once in a blue moon.

  • Dummy4 on December 31, 2010, 7:22 GMT

    That is just 1 loss for Mumbai and they are out.....I think they still are the best team....in India atleast.....but they have been unable to produce a very good player for India in this decade.... @Christy1268: How come you are assuming things(Mumbai is candyfloss's team)????

  • Mithun on December 31, 2010, 7:04 GMT

    Hard luck this time to Jaffer& Co(Mumbai)...One mistake caused them ouster in the tournament.But they are still the best team in the Indian Domestic Circuit and would be for sometime.There would be an odd season were they would fail to triumph the Ranji Trophy but surely would hit hard the 2011-12 season and destroy the opposition teams as they usually do with their "Kadoos" and street smart cricketing skills.

  • Narasimha on December 31, 2010, 7:04 GMT

    I think Mumbai deserve this. They were foul mouthed even last year and they tried to do the same against Rajastan as well by going to the extent of calling their best batsman a chakka. They may refuse it, but other players words should also be taken into consideration. They use their Financial clout like BCCI and the team plays like Oz did during their peak. Last year too Mumbai wouldn't have won the tourney if Umpires were not substandard. They gave 6 decisions against Karnataka, reminding the ugly umpiring of SYDNEY-2008. Hope Mumbai will learn from all these and come back stronger next year. I like that team for only 1 player they have produced. No prizes for guessing who it is. i really wanted a final of Mumbai and Karnataka with Dravid and Tendulkar in opposing camps.

  • Christy on December 31, 2010, 6:48 GMT

    @candyfloss - "The Best domestic team" is decided after this years Ranji Finals - not based on previous years results. Ur team is at best a No 7 or 8 - so dont assume things !!

  • Devadatta on December 31, 2010, 6:26 GMT

    Sad to see Mumbai losing in QF. But I can't figure out the bench strength point as far as batting is concerned. Why not play Marathe as a specialist batsman? What happened to Prashant Naik and Onkar Khanwilkar? And if bench strength is such an issue, we should seriously try to get the most successful Ranji batsman back to Mumbai for next season - anyone remembers Amol Mazumdar?

    The Mumbai exports XI is strong enough to put up a Super League XI:

    Vinayak Mane Bhavin Thakkar Vinit Indulkar Amol Mazumdar Nishit Shetty Vinayak Samant Wilkin Motta Sairaj Bahutule Rajesh Pawar Munaf Patel ??

    Why not get some involved for the next season?

  • Aby on December 31, 2010, 1:05 GMT

    Jaffer is the worst captain, i had ever seen. Also, 3 points for first innings lead is the worst thing in ranji trophy. In the league phase, jaffer just tried for first innings lead and made 5 matches bloody draw. I think jaffer scored 3 big centuries in those 2nd innings and not pushed for win. It's very nice to see, jaffer getting it's own medicine. The BCCI should think to the system being used in County Cricket, where first innings lead is not considering, which will make teams pushing for win and thus making interesting domestic matches. @candyloss: no need for lossing interest in remaining matches as mumbai is out. The Semifinal between Baroda and karnataka will be a match to watch out for.

  • syed on December 30, 2010, 20:00 GMT

    Bad luck Jaffer, one bad game will not loose your confidencel. You are one of the best batsman and succesful captain. Better luck next time. Your simplicity, style and patience is beyond compare. All the best for 2011.

  • Allan on December 30, 2010, 19:19 GMT

    Never heard of captain dropping names while giving reasons for a loss. Probably why he does not play Test cricket. Very much a Boycott or Gavaskar type of player. Poor team man!

  • S.rao on December 30, 2010, 19:01 GMT

    The best domestic team in the world is out of the Ranji tournament.I have lost my intrest in the remaining games.

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