Suryakumar Yadav put up a fighting show as wickets kept tumbling at the other end. The batter, who is known for his 360 degree approach, smashed 68 off 40 balls, helping India pile a respectable total on the board, especially after losing five batters inside the first 10 overs.
After starting the T20 World Cup on a stellar note, Team India were finally handed a reality check by Temba Bavuma’s South Africa in Perth on Sunday. The two sides met in the Super 12 encounter, the outcome of which directly impacted the others pooled in Group 2, as South Africa edged India by five wickets.
The defeat saw South Africa replace India at the top, while Pakistan’s hope to remain in the semifinal race took a strong jolt. India, on the other hand, missed out on an opportunity to seal the very important semifinal berth.
The Men In Blue, who opted to bat first, could manage a paltry 133/9 on the board in 20 overs, a target which was chased down by the opposition with two balls to spare.
David Miller and Aiden Markram were the architects behind South Africa’s successful run chase, as the pair slammed half-centuries each.
For India it was Suryakumar Yadav, who put up a fighting show, as wickets kept tumbling at the other end. The batter, who is known for his 360 degree approach, smashed 68 off 40 balls, helping India pile a respectable total on the board, especially after losing five batters inside the first 10 overs.
Suryakumar’s inning featured six 4s and three 6s, before he was caught by Keshav Maharaj off Wayne Parnell’s bowling in the 19th over.
Suryakumar’s batting also saw him earn praises from across the border as veteran Pakistan batter Shoaib Malik compared him with AB de Villiers. Malik made the comparison while speaking on A Sports, where former captain Misbah-ul-Haq was also a panelist.
The ex-cricketer rated Suryakumar as the “best middle-order batsman in T20 cricket”, also explained the reason behind it. “He is the best middle-order batsman in T20 cricket. At 170 strike rate, in this match situation, against this bowling, on this pitch, it’s amazing. I haven’t seen an innings like that. To play a dominating innings like that on this pitch …it seemed as if he knew where the ball would land and where he can hit it.” noted Misbah.
Following which, Malik added his reasons behind Suryakumar’s meteoric rise in the shorter format. “The reason for his success and consistency is that he doesn’t change his game. Even when he gets out in 2 innings, the way of his playing is the same. Yes, he assesses the conditions and the bowlers well and decides what shots can work. He also plays with the minds of the bowlers. He knows what the bowler will bowl: this one will be outside off, this one will be short or at me.
I would give the example of AB de Villiers here. He would know ok the bowler has bowled a yorker now, he will bowl a slow bouncer here or outside off stump,” he said.
Suryakumar failed to go big against Pakistan, but was among the runs in India’s encounter against Netherlands. He had then notched a 25-ball 51.