NEW DELHI: Legendary hitter Sunil Gavaskar on Wednesday he said Mumbai Indians batsman and Mr 360 degrees Suryakumar Yadav appeared to be playing ‘gully cricket’ during his majestic batting against Royal Challengers Bangalore at Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
Suryakumar batted 83 runs off just 35 balls – his highest IPL score – in the Mumbai Indians’ six-wicket win against RCB and was adjudged man of the match. His hitting was studded with 7 fours and 6 highs.
“SKY was playing bowlers. It gives you a ravine feel when he bowls like that. It just got better with practice and hard work,” Gavaskar told Star Sports’ Cricket Live.
“His low hand is so powerful that he uses it to perfection. Against RCB, he started off by hitting long, long shots and then exploited all over the park.”
Highlights MI vs RCB IPL 2023: Suryakumar blitz lifts Mumbai to third place
The legendary batsman and former India captain said Suryakumar’s red-hot form was erased by young Nehal Wadhera (52 not out from 34 balls) who also batted in his second fifty of the season.
The duo struck a 140-ride partnership to put MI in the driver’s seat in the race pursuit.
“When you bat with SKY your confidence goes up, but the best thing about Nehal Wadhera’s inning was that he didn’t try to hit shots like SKY. The best thing about him is that his balance was outstanding,” said Gavaskar.
IPL 2023: Suryakumar Yadav blitz helps Mumbai Indians defeat Royal Challengers Bangalore
Suryakumar Yadav hammered 83 off 35 balls on Tuesday as the Mumbai Indians beat Royal Challengers Bangalore by six wickets to jump from eighth to third in the IPL points table. Photo credit: Raju Shinde
RCB skipper Faf du Plessis (65) and Glenn Maxwell (68) lit up the first innings after being put into bat. Photo credit: Raju Shinde
The in-form Du Plessis survived a fall to nothing before fighting back to record his sixth half-century of the season. Photo credit: Raju Shinde
Maxwell greeted Chris Jordan with two sixes in his opener, but the pace bowler backed things up in his final two and dismissed Dinesh Karthik (30). Photo credit: Raju Shinde
Jason Behrendorff struck early with two wickets including that of Virat Kohli (1), who returned figures of 3/36.
At 16/2, Du Plessis and Maxwell combined to punish the Mumbai attack, hitting seven sixes in total in their fourth century partnership of the season. Photo credit: Raju Shinde
Chasing 200 to win, Suryakumar put up a stand of 140 with Nehal Wadhera (52*), as Mumbai stormed home with 21 balls to spare at Wankhede Stadium. Photo credit: Raju Shinde
Suryakumar’s blitz with six sixes was his best IPL and made RCB’s 199/6 look like a small total. Photo credit: Raju Shinde
Opener Ishan Kishan made a quick 42 but Mumbai slipped to 52/2 when skipper Rohit Sharma fell for seven to extend his batting slump. Photo credit: Raju Shinde
However, Suryakumar and the southpaw Wadhera soon took up the pursuit and brought the attack into the opposition.
Once settled Suryakumar burst into life to hit his 50 from 26 balls and kept the charge going with runs of sixes and fours.
Suryakumar went down with his side needing eight more to win and Tim David went out for a duck but Wadhera hit the winning six to bring in his fifty. Photo credit: Raju Shinde
Former Indian spinner Harbhajan Singh also spoke highly of 22-year-old Wadhera for seizing the opportunity with both hands and repaying the trust of the MI team management.
“Nehal Wadhera has made most of the opportunities. He has accelerated from U-25 to Punjab Ranji Trophy and MI scouted him well. He just made the opportunities count in Tilak Varma’s absence,” said Harbhajan.
(With inputs from PTI)