Centurion:Mumbai Indians captain Sachin Tendulkar said losing crucial player in the middle of the tournament and inconsistent batting cost them a place in the semifinals of the Indian Premier League.
Tendulkar though refused to believe that were outclassed by any of the opponents.
"The big difference till now has been of just two-three runs so far, very rarely the other side has beaten us overwhelmingly. Eventually if we had scored that extra run here and there, then maybe we would have been in the semis.
"The biggest blow was after the first six games, we lost three players from the playing XI. We lost Zaheer Khan and Shikhar Dhawan, we had traded both of them. We lost them after six games.
"Also Saurabh Tiwary, he played a practice game, and he had really played well. I was pretty confident that he would come in and play some big shots. That sort of disturbed the balance I think," Tendulkar said after their last league match which they lost by four wickets to Delhi Daredevils.
The Mumbaikar also believes that it would not be easy to roll over Delhi in the last-four stage.
"Without any doubt Delhi Daredevils have really really played well. Their batting looks pretty solid, the bowling is also balanced. So all in all, I think it is a very strong side and one will have to be on the top of their game to beat them," he said.
Talking about his captaincy in the Twenty20 tournament, Tendulkar said," It's been good, it's been tough. There have been times when you can't do much. If we were batting, and we have got...that match against Rajasthan Royals, I just could not do anything. I was sitting inside.
"In fielding you can atleast go upto the bowler or the fielder and discuss a few things and try and bring that change. But otherwise I am just like any other player, the guys who are there in the middle, couple of guys, batters. I cannot play for them, neither can they play for me. There comes a stage when every individual has to go and deliver. We have been inconsistent in doing that."
Asked for his reaction on Delhi coach Greg Shippered's idea that five foreign players should be allowed to play in the team, Tendulkar said players hardly had any say in techincal matters.
"I don't know at this stage...I am not really thinking about that. But maybe it is something which could be discussed. And it is decision taken by the franchises more than the players. Even when it was decided that the four players should be included, it wasn't our decision," he said.