Chennai, May 26: Delhi Daredevils skipper Virender Sehwag, after their 86-run loss at the hands of Chennai Super Kings, said the team missed Morne Morkel and defended the decision to rest the South African, who was the highest wicket taker of the tournament.
Sehwag said that Delhi missed its prime bowler Morkel on Friday as they fell short by 86 runs to gift a final berth to Chennai Super Kings.
"Yes, we missed Morne Morkel, unfortunately (Irfan) Pathan got injured and (we) had to maintain the balance," Sehwag said after Daredevils were knocked out of the tournament after an 86-run defeat here.
Morkel, the highest wicket-taker in the tournament was rested to accommodate an extra batsman, which cost Delhi as they lost another opportunity to make it to the finals.
Irfan's injury made Delhi to rework their line-up. With the loss of an all-rounder, they thought of replacing him with another with same skills. They opted for Andre Russell, who can bowl medium pace and is a big hitter. The idea was to strengthen their batting. However, with only four foreigners allowed, they had to sacrifice Morkel. With an Indian bowler to be in the XI, they went for Sunny Gupta and it did not work out.
Sehwag, David Warner, Mahela Jayawardene, Ross Taylor, Naman Ojha and Venugopal Rao would have been enough. But they went for the seventh batsman and even that could not sail them into the final.
He also praised Murali Vijay for his brilliant knock which helped CSK post an imposing total of 222/5 in the second qualifier at Chennai on Friday.
"The way Vijay played, he took the game away from us, then they have a good batting line-up and it took it away. It was a good pitch and you could score 180 was chaseable, but 40 more runs was going to be difficult to chase," Sehwag said.
Sehwag also thanked his owners and their support for backing them and assured that the team will put up a good show in the Champions League later this year.
"Lot of positives, not expected us to end number one after the league, thanks to the owners for backing us, we will try and come back hard in the Champions League," he said.