India vs England: Has Suryakumar Yadav Done Enough To Merit A Place In World T20 Squad?
Suryakumar Yadav has the highest aggregate for Mumbai Indians in the last three seasons of the IPL. He has been a regular performer in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy and Vijay Hazare Trophy and produced two brilliant performances in his first couple of outings for the country. Surely he has done enough to merit a place in India’s squad for the World T20.
Suryakumar Yadav has had a dream start to his international career. A Player of the Match Performance on debut and a defining cameo in the very next match which was a big series decider. The clarity of thought and mindset, the intent and shot-making and guts, determination and courage have defined his two performances for India so far.
1-2 down and batting first, the home team had to put up a massive total to break the trend and pattern in the series. Yadav, under pressure and knowing he may just have a handful of opportunities to prove his worth before the team combination was finalized for the mega event in October, produced a Player of the Match performance on debut from the number three position hammering 57 off just 31 deliveries.
He then hammered 32 off just 17 deliveries allowing skipper Virat Kohli to settle in and anchor the innings again laying the platform for a massive Indian total in the decider.
Surely, Yadav has done enough to merit a place in India’s squad for the World T20 in October.
Yadav displayed some great qualities in his two outings against England in the series. He was under severe pressure to deliver as a failure would have meant going back to the drawing board and performing again in the IPL and the domestic circuit. He not only had to perform but stand-out with his performances and that is exactly what Yadav did in his power-packed knocks. In two massive encounters for India, he came in at number 3 – the position owned by the greatest limited overs’ batsman in the game’s history and produced a match-winning and match-changing performance.
To do so against the best team in the world requires a tremendous amount of skill and self-belief. Yadav could have well batted within himself and play safe for a spot in the team. A run-a-ball 60 or 70 in an anchor’s role in his first outing for the country and no one would have raised an eyebrow given the situation India were in early in the match. But that would have not helped the team’s cause. India would have put up a par score and most definitely lost the match and the series. So instead and unselfishly, Yadav took a risk and went after the bowling. He backed himself to play the defining knock of the innings and it paid off. This also showcased his positive mindset and the quality of putting the team over the individual. He continued with this mindset in the series decider too.
Yadav’s high strike rate in both the innings and his dynamic and enterprising batting – his first scoring shot in international cricket was a stunning six of a pull shot off Jofra Archer of the first delivery he faced in his career – was in sync with the aggressive and attacking brand of cricket his captain had promised to play at the beginning of the series. Yadav had executed that to the T! Such audacity, such confidence and no fear – these were the hallmarks of his magnificent performances on Thursday and Saturday.
Yadav’s high-scoring rate was a new feature he had added to his batting in the last edition of the IPL in the UAE. Not only did he impress with big scores at critical junctures throughout the season but also took his stroke-play up a few notches and gears and ended with a strike rate of 145.01 in the tournament. He aggregated 480 runs in 15 innings with four fifties in the competition. Only AB de Villiers and Ishan Kishan had a higher scoring rate amongst the 10 highest run-getters of the tournament.
Yadav has been in tremendous form for Mumbai Indians in the last three seasons. He scored 424 runs at a strike rate of 130.86 in 2019 and 512 runs at a strike rate of 133.33 in 2018. In fact, he is the highest run-getter for Mumbai Indians in the IPL since 2018 with an aggregate of 1416 runs and played a pivotal role with the bat in their successive title wins in 2019 and 2020. This is no mean achievement in a team full of superstars and comprising world class batsmen like Rohit Sharma and Quinton de Kock! Versatility is another quality of Yadav’s batting. While he batted at number 3 in IPL 2020 and IPL 2019, he was hugely successful as an opener in IPL 2018.
Yadav had a splendid couple of seasons in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy too – India’s premier domestic T20 tournament – in 2018-19 and 2019-20. He aggregated 360 runs in 10 innings at a strike rate of 145.16 in the 2018-19 season and 392 runs in 10 innings at a strike rate of 168.97 in the 2019-20 season.
Yadav also has a stellar record in first-class cricket. He has scored 5326 runs in 77 matches at an average of 44.01 including 14 hundreds. He was in fine form for Mumbai in the 2019-20 Ranji Trophy where he aggregated 508 runs in just 5 matches at an average of 56.44 and an incredible strike rate of 95.13 including two hundreds.
He had a fine season in the Vijay Hazare Trophy in 2021 where playing for Mumbai he scored 332 runs in 5 matches at an average of 66.4 and strike rate of 151.59 including a hundred and two fifties. Yadav has a very impressive List-A record with 2779 runs in 87 innings at an average of 37.55 and strike rate of 103.88. His recent exploits have earned him a call-up to India’s ODI squad to face England in a three-match series in Pune later in this month.
On the better side of 30, Yadav is not getting any younger. He has waited for his opportunity performing year after year at the domestic level and season after season for one of the best franchise’s in the world! And has then made the most in grand style in his first couple of appearances for the country.
Yadav has surely done enough to deserve a place as a middle-order batsman in India’s World T20 squad for the mega event in October.