The Indian middle-order batter, Suryakumar Yadav score a scintillating half-century in India’s second match of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 against the Netherlands, helping them to what turned out to be a match-winning total. Suryakumar surpassed the 50-run mark in just 25 deliveries, an innings featuring seven fours and a six.
In fact, there were three half-centurions in India’s innings including skipper Rohit Sharma who scored 53 off 39, and Virat Kohli, who top-scored with 62 off 44. However, it was Suryakumar who was chosen as the player of the match as India won the match comfortably by 56 runs to go at the top of the Group 2 points table.
During a post-match interaction, former Indian head coach, Ravi Shastri backed Suryakumar to play all the formats for India and said he can surprise a few in red-ball cricket. He said, “I think he (Suryakumar Yadav) is a three-format player. I know they don’t talk about him for Test cricket. This guy can play Test cricket. And he can surprise a few. Send him there at number 5, let him stir it up.”
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Suryakumar made his India debut during Shastri’s reign as the head coach. The 32-year-old recalled how Ravi Shastri told him to just bat freely ahead of his international debut. He recalled, “I still remember he (Shastri) called me up. He was sitting by the poolside before I made the debut and said ‘Jaake bindaas Dena’ (Go Enjoy Yourself). I still remember that. I am just loving it.”
SKY played 13 ODIs and 36 T20Is for India since making his debut in March 2021. He has tasted limited success in ODIs as he has scored just a couple of fifties. However, he has been excellent T20Is with 1111 runs n 34 innings at a strike-rate of 177.47 alongside a century and 10 half-centuries. SKY is yet to make his debut in Test cricket but he boasts of a healthy record in first-class cricket as well. In 77 matches, he has scored 5326 runs at 44.01 including 14 centuries and 26 fifties.