Suryakumar Yadav has ruled 2022, at least in the shortest format of the game. Just look at the numbers – 1164 runs at 46.56 – Suryakumar has been one of the best batters in world cricket, with an astonishing strike-rate of 187.43, where he bailed the Men in Blue out of trouble plenty of times.
Rightfully so, the right-hander has been rewarded with the vice-captaincy role for the upcoming three-match T20I series against Sri Lanka, that begins on January 3. Suryakumar opened up on the decision, stating that it wasn’t expected but at the same time, he reckoned that it is like a reward for him for his successful year.
“It (vice-captaincy) wasn’t expected, but the way the past year has been for me, I can say that it’s like a reward for me. I’m feeling very good about it, and I’m really looking forward to it,” Surya told Times of India at the end of Ranji Trophy day’s play.
“My father forwarded the (team) to me, because he’s always on social media. Then, we spoke to each other. He also sent me a small message: ‘Not to take any pressure and enjoy your batting,’” he added.
At the same time, however, Suryakumar revealed that this feeling is still like a dream but of course, has been the result of his hard work over the years in domestic cricket.
“Of course, it still feels like a dream. My hard work of several years (has paid off). The seeds that I’ve sown, that tree has finally grown, and I’m enjoying its fruits. So, I’m really happy with the way things are growing. I want to ensure that this patch keeps getting longer. The more I’m in this space, the better,” he beamed.
Responsibility and pressure often come hand in hand for Indian stars. But for the 32-year-old, it is all about enjoying his game, and insisted that he doesn’t “carry any baggage”
“Since the time I’ve been playing cricket for India, there has always been responsibility and pressure on me. But at the same time, I’ve been saying that I’m just enjoying my game in the middle. I don’t carry any baggage. I don’t think too much. I do the thinking only in the hotel and in the nets. When it comes to the match, I just look to enjoy my game, and express myself,” Surya said.
Luckily, the right-hander has to work hand-in-hand with Hardik Pandya, someone who he knows very well from the pair’s time together at Mumbai Indians. Suryakumar insisted that Hardik’s leadership is fantastic before insisting that their style of play is quite complimentary.
“Absolutely. Our bond has always been very good. We’ve played a lot together for India and MI. Our batting numbers are also one after the other. We’ve batted a lot together. We complement each other. He’s been a fantastic leader, as you’ve seen in the IPL, and recently, while leading India. So, I really enjoy playing under his captaincy,” he complimented.