It has been a tough time for the world No 1 T20I batter Suryakumar Yadav who has scores of 15, 1 and 0 since the start of IPL, adding more to his woes, as he entered the tournament following three consecutive first-ball ducks against Australia in the ODI series in March.
With Mumbai Indians managing just one win in three matches so far, the home side and their batting mainstay Suryakumar will hope for better returns, especially after captain Rohit Sharma walked the talk, scoring a match-winning 65 against Delhi Capitals a few days ago.
Rohit had admitted that Mumbai Indians, a side full of young players post the 2022 mega auction, would need their senior players to shoulder the responsibility and in the batting department, Suryakumar is the next name that comes up after the skipper.
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The focus has also been on Suryakumar every time he has walked out to bat in this IPL and even in media conferences, but luck has not favoured the batter who has a grand total of 16 runs in three outings.
Against Chennai Super Kings, he was caught on a delivery down the leg side, and against Delhi, he was caught off a short ball at fine leg – an area he used to clear the ropes with ease when in his pomp.
On Saturday, the right-handed batter had a lengthy nets session against throwdown specialists in the Mumbai Indians’ camp but by the look of it, he certainly did not hit the right gears.
If some of Suryakumar's hits fell inside the boundary ropes, Cameron Green batting next to him in the second nets sent the ball flying easily into the stands.
The Indian batter did connect well on a few, but certainly not with the rhythm that is so familiar with his batting. He also got a few edges behind the wicket and was cleaned up on one occasion.
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After MI captain Rohit Sharma vehemently supported the batter and head coach Mark Boucher and batting coach Kieron Pollard joining at later stages, it was younger teammate Tim David's turn on Saturday.
"For me I do not have any concerns about Surya," David told the media during the pre-match conference.
"In the last game he played a shot that he plays all the time and it normally goes for a six. He was prepared to put his innings on the line for the team and walked out in that situation to do that.
"He is an important part of the team as much as anyone and we know when he is going to be in his best form he is going to score in 90s and 100s and win us games,” David added.
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