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05-26-2013, 03:43 PM #1
[Cricket] Hussey looks ahead to exciting IPL finalChennai Super Kings star Michael Hussey is keen to make cricket the focus in Sunday's Indian Premier League final against Mumbai Indians.
The IPL competition has been marred by allegations of spot-fixing and corruption, with Chennai team official Gurunath Meiyappan the latest figure to be arrested.
Meiyappan is accused of corruption, while umpire Asad Rauf and three Rajasthan Royals players have also been the subject of recent enquiries from the authorities.
Hussey, who has scored the most runs of any player in the IPL – 732 in 16 matches at an average of 56.30 – wants the attention to be on the field though, and is predicting an exciting final between the two best sides in the regular season.
"I think the boys will be very excited to get onto the ground tomorrow, put all of the controversies behind us and just concentrate on the game and just try to express ourselves as well as we possibly can on the field," Hussey said.
"I think it's going to be a fantastic match, Mumbai are a brilliant team and CSK have been a very good team over the course of the season as well so I think it's a fitting finale for a great tournament."
Chennai have never failed to reach the IPL play-offs, making the final on five of the six possible occasions.
Super Kings coach Stephen Fleming put the team's incredible consistency down to their recruiting policy and loyalty within the team.
"We had a strategy right from the outset that we were going to be loyal to players and that became apparent probably going into the fourth year with the auctions where we retained 95 percent of our players," Fleming said.
"And what you build up over that period of time is relationships and you can come in for a year and build a team environment, but it's only so deep. What we've been able to do is drill down another level.
"So we've been very lucky that we've been able to build that over a six year period."
Mumbai are sweating on the fitness of star batsman Sachin Tendulkar, with the 40-year-old having missed the last four matches with a wrist injury.
An appearance from Tendulkar in the final is unlikely, but Mumbai coach John Wright said youngster Aditya Tare will continue to do a good job if the highest run-scorer in the history of Test cricket does not pass a late fitness test.
"At this stage, Sachin Tendulkar is probably doubtful for tomorrow, but we'll make a call," Wright said.
"He's still a big part of our team, whether he's playing or not, so we're just happy to have him here. Aditya Tare's come in a done a great job, so we'll just take it as it is.
"But Sachin is a big part of Mumbai Indians, we play for people like Sachin, we're a family. We're pleased to be here and we're looking forward to it."
Both sides were unable to train at Eden Gardens, the ground that will host the final, on Friday as rain soaked Kolkata.