Mumbai:The home advantage factor with even an away match against Deccan Chargers in neighbouring Navi Mumbai has worked well for us, conceded Mumbai Indians director (cricket) T A Sekar on Monday.
"We had great support playing at the D Y Patil Stadium with the crowd behind us. Whenever Sachin (Tendulkar) plays he has great support. Playing at home has been our advantage," said Sekar ahead of yet another home tie on Monday against laggards Kings XI Punjab at the Brabourne Stadium.
Out of Mumbai Indians' first eight scheduled matches, only the game against Delhi Daredevils had been fixed outside the state.
Mumbai are currently leading the tally of the eight-team tournament with ten points from five wins out of six matches.
But Sekar cautioned the Mumbai players not to take the Punjab outfit lightly.
"They have not played well but are a fine side and can always cause an upset. We are not going to take it light," he declared.
Praising Tendulkar's performance both as captain and as a player, Sekar said, "After 20 years of international cricket Sachin knows better than anyone exactly what to do and what not to do in crunch situations."
Sekar said the manner in which Tendulkar has batted so far in the frenetic T20 format was worth noting.
"Sachin has played the anchoring role extremely well and he has played terrific cricket shots to show T20 is not just a slog fest. He has paced his innings very well," said the former India and Tamil Nadu pace bowler.
Sekar also gave kudos to domestic players Saurabh Tiwary, Ambati Rayudu and R Satish for performing well in the midddle order and said these players along with West Indians Dwayne Bravo and Kieron Pollard gave the Mumbai team a solid look.
He also defended sending in Pollard way down the order by saying he was the one player who is capable of playing big shots against the pace bowlers in death overs.
"We know that he is a very good player against the medium pacers and the only one who can do the job late in the order. He comes in at the same position for the West Indies too," Sekar said.
Sekar said the team was comfortable both in setting a target or chasing it and it was captain Tendulkar's prerogative to decide whether to bat or bowl on a particular day if he wins the toss.