India staged a remarkable comeback in the third T20I against West Indies on August 8 after facing defeats in the first two encounters. The match, held at the Providence Stadium in Guyana, saw Hardik Pandya and his team secure a convincing seven-wicket victory, propelled by Kuldeep Yadav’s exceptional bowling display and Suryakumar Yadav’s explosive innings.
Opting to bowl first after losing the toss, Kuldeep Yadav played a pivotal role in restricting West Indies to 158/5. The seasoned spinner clinched a three-wicket haul, finishing his four-over spell with impressive figures of 3/28. Meanwhile, Suryakumar Yadav, the top-ranked T20I batsman, led India’s chase in style, smashing 83 off 44 balls.
While Suryakumar garnered praise for his performance, cricket legend Sanjay Manjrekar highlighted Kuldeep’s contribution, labeling him the true match-winner. Manjrekar tweeted, “Surya was brilliant again but Kuldeep the real match winner for me. Restricting WI to 159 by taking 3 top order wickets including that of Pooran. Well done Kuldeep!”
Surya was brilliant again but Kuldeep the real match winner for me. Restricting WI to 159 by taking 3 top order wickets including that of Pooran. Well done Kuldeep! 👏👏👏
— Sanjay Manjrekar (@sanjaymanjrekar) August 9, 2023
Notably, Kuldeep Yadav achieved a significant milestone during the match, becoming the fastest Indian to reach 50 wickets in T20Is in terms of matches played. He accomplished this feat in his 30th T20I appearance for India, surpassing the record previously held by fellow teammate Yuzvendra Chahal, who took 50 wickets in 34 matches.
Kuldeep’s 50th T20I wicket came from West Indies opener Brandon King, whom he caught and bowled for 42 runs in the 15th over of the innings. Additionally, he accounted for the dismissals of Johnson Charles and the dangerous Nicholas Pooran.
It’s worth noting that the fastest to achieve 50 T20I wickets overall is Dhruvkumar Maisuria from Botswana, who achieved the milestone in 22 matches, while among ICC Full-Member nations, Sri Lanka’s Ajantha Mendis holds the record with 50 wickets in 26 T20Is.