Suryakumar Yadav Best Suited At No. 4 Position Against Top Quality Bowling Attacks: Saba Karim

Suryakumar Yadav’s splendid effort comprising eight fours and four sixes ensured India cantered to the target in the 3rd T20I with an over to spare to take a 2-1 lead in the ongoing T20I series against West Indies.

Suryakumar Yadav is in a league of his own. The right-handed batter, who can pummel any opposition with his 360-degree strokeplay, powered India to a seven-wicket win over West Indies in the third T20I against hosts West Indies on Tuesday.

His 76 off just 44 deliveries was a testament to India’s attacking approach in the 20-over format, and Suryakumar Yadav was given free rein to fire at the top alongside Rohit Sharma.

Suryakumar Yadav Photo by Deepak Malik / Sportzpics for BCCI

Suryakumar Yadav Best Suited At No. 4 Position: Saba Karim

While his captain retired hurt in the second over, Suryakumar Yadav kept the scoreboard moving with his fluent innings. His effort comprising eight fours and four sixes ensured the visitors cantered to the target with an over to spare to take a 2-1 lead in the series ahead of the final two games.

Saba Karim.  – File photo of former wicketkeeper - The Hindu
Saba Karim. – File photo of former wicketkeeper – The Hindu

With less than three months remaining for the 2022 World T20, India has tried multiple openers, and their punt with Suryakumar Yadav has not been a failed experiment.

But former national selector and India player Saba Karim feels Suryakumar Yadav needs to bat at the No. 4 position, as his quality to score against ‘top-quality’ bowling makes all the difference, especially in ICC events.

“I still think that he is best suited at No.4, especially against a top-quality bowling attack. No.4 is a very important batting position in ICC events, you need a player like Suryakumar there. He is equally proficient against pacers and spinners and scores at a healthy strike rate,” he said.

Suryakumar Yadav forged an 86-run stand with Shreyas Iyer, who made 24, and the partnership effectively ended West Indies’ hopes for a win. An unbeaten 33 from Rishabh Pant then sealed the game in St Kitts. His latest batting display has rewarded him on the latest ICC batting rankings update too.

Suryakumar Yadav has six scores of fifty or more in 20 innings in T20I cricket. Three of them have come from the No.3 spot, including the one on his debut against England in Ahmedabad last year, and two from the No.4 spot.

On Tuesday, he hit his latest half-century as an opening batter, after his partner Rohit Sharma had to retire hurt on 11, turning a potentially tricky chase of 165 into a straightforward one in St Kitts.

Suryakumar Yadav has the ability to make batting look ridiculously easy. He did so when he kick-started his T20I career with a hook off the first ball he faced, from Jofra Archer, for six. More recently this July, at Trent Bridge, he walloped 117 off 55 balls in a chase of 216 where no other Indian batter passed 30.

Suryakumar Yadav Is Brilliant In The Middle Order: Reetinder Singh Sodhi

Former India player Reetinder Singh Sodhi also lavished praise on Suryakumar Yadav, explaining how he is the ideal pick for the middle order.

“He is an exceptional player, he has proven himself at the International level. He is brilliant in the middle order, he knows how to run the game, and he knows how to rotate the strike as well as score boundaries at regular intervals. He will keep the scoreboard ticking,” he said.

Reetinder Singh Sodhi.  Photo Credit: Getty Images.
Reetinder Singh Sodhi. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Suryakumar Yadav has moved to the second spot in the ICC T20I men’s player rankings, which is his career-best. The Indian is likely to get the chance to overtake top-ranked Babar Azam over the coming week.

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