New Delhi: Mumbai Indians skipper Harbhajan Singh blamed himself for the 37-run loss to Delhi Daredevils in an IPL match here on Friday and said he needs to lift his performance for his and the team's sake.
Harbhajan's four overs went for 42 runs as Delhi Daredevils outclassed Mumbai. "I have got to lift my performance for myself and the team. I haven't been bowling well, the last 2-3 matches, have gone for runs," Harbhajan said.
"Everybody goes through it but that's not an excuse. I take the blame. I should have bowled much better," the offspinner added.
Harbhajan hoped to come out of the slump and lead by example. "I will work hard and will try and do well again for the team, like I did in the past. I still have a few more years of cricket left in me.
"Like the good days do not last forever, I hope the bad days will also not last for long...hope the good days will come soon. In Twenty20 and IPL, bowlers will go for runs, but my job is to take wickets."
To add to the loss, Mumbai Indians are worried over Kieron Pollard who seemed to have hurt his shoulder while going for a catch during last night's match at the Feroz Shah Kotla.
"We don't know the latest on the nature of his injury, it's definitely his shoulder. Hope there is nothing serious. He is a match-winner and hope he comes back for the coming matches," Harbhajan said.
Mumbai were also affected by Dinesh Karthik's failure to effect an easy stumping when Virender Sehwag was yet to cross his half century. "That was one of the factors," Harbhajan said, adding, "We didn't bowl well. They batted brilliantly, batted well at the start. We have to grab our chances."
The decision to include inexperienced medium-fast Rahul Shukla for such a big match was met with surprise, but Harbhajan defended the move. "We wanted to rest Munaf (Patel), he has been playing for the last six matches, he felt sore. When you have them (youngsters) you have to give chances to the players to see if they can deliver," he said.
With the Daredevils continuing their domination at the top, Harbhajan admitted Delhi are the strongest team at the moment. "They have got a very strong batting line-up, they also have good bowling attack... They have got two guys who bowl at 145kph. At the moment they look the strongest, but in this form any team can beat anyone."