New Zealand all-rounder James Neesham had a forgettable outing on his debut for Mumbai Indians (MI) in the high-scoring thriller on Saturday against Chennai Super Kings (CSK).

Neesham got out for a golden duck and went for 26 runs in the two overs he bowled. The 30-year-old was criticised by fans on social media for his dismal performance which prompted a tweet from him offering clarification.

Neesham walked out to bat at number seven in the penultimate over of MI’s run chase. He took guard when MI needed 16 runs to win from seven deliveries. With Kieron Pollard firing from the other end, Neesham had the license to go for the big hit off the last ball of the 19th over against Sam Curran.

Neesham tried to go for the scoop shot on the full delivery and use the short boundary of the Arun Jaitley Stadium but it went straight into the hands of Shardul Thakur at fine leg.

“Here’s the thing a lot of you don’t seem to understand: I would rather get a golden duck taking an option that gives my team the best chance of winning, than get a not out taking an option that preserves my personal record,” Neesham wrote in his tweet.

Mitchell McClenaghan, the former MI bowler, also liked a few tweets that criticised Neesham’s selection over overseas players like Nathan Coulter-Nile, Adam Milne, and Marco Jansen.

One of Neesham’s followers shared the screenshot of McClenaghan’s liked tweets to which Neesham simply replied “Lol.”.

On the other hand, Punjab Kings (PBKS) bowler and former teammate Arshdeep Singh lauded Neesham’s intent with the bat.

Neesham was picked by MI for Rs 50 lakh in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 auction. However, the Kiwi big-hitter is yet to prove himself in IPL with just 61 runs from 10 games and three wickets in his bag.