Durban: Coming into Champions League T20 as the defending champions, Mumbai Indian might be leaving South Africa without a single win under their belt, but for Dwayne Smith, the experience has been fulfilling personally as he got a chance to open the batting with Sachin Tendulkar.
"At MI you open the batting with Sachin Tendulkar. From the time I was young, I've always admired him as a batsman and to open the batting with him is a big achievement for me. I feel a lot more confident when I'm batting with him," Smith was quoted as saying by clt20.com. "He keeps chatting to me while batting. Especially if I play a bad shot, he comes up to me and tells me it wasn't the right shot to play and explains me how to go about the game," Smith added.
Stating that there was a small technical issue that he was facing before coming to CLT20 but has now managed to sort it out with the help of Tendulkar and MI coach Robin Singh, Smith said, "He [Tendulkar] has been talking to me in the nets as well. I had a little glitch coming from World T20. Sachin and coach Robin Singh have been of great help to me in sorting it out. I don't have any problems anymore. I just want to move on from it."
Smith said that he had thoroughly enjoyed his stint as an opener during the CLT20. "From the time I started opening, I've enjoyed this role and I still am enjoying it. As an opener you get the better part of the game. It's challenging as sometimes you have to build the innings, while at times you have to go after the bowling. The first six overs are the opportunity for me to play to my strength and attack the ball. It's good for me and I like it.”
Meanwhile, speaking about his Mumbai Indians' dismal performance during the tournament, Smith said that the team failed to click as a unit. "I just think we didn't play as a team. The batting or bowling didn't come together. We know where we went wrong. We will all go back to the drawing board and learn from our mistakes," he insisted.