Saturday, February 24, 2024

Suryakumar Yadav wins ICC Men’s T20I Cricketer of the Year again

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Suryakumar Yadav has won the ICC Men’s T20I Cricketer of the Year award for the second year in a row.

With his eclectic mix of shots, Suryakumar dominated 2023 with an average that closed in on 50 and a strike rate exceeding 150. The backbone of India’s middle order got starts throughout the year, delivering several match-winning contributions. This is the second consecutive year that the India batter has taken this award home.

He overcame the challenge of Sikandar Raza, Alpesh Ramjani and Mark Chapman to take the award home.

Looking to go back-to-back after winning the accolade in 2022, Suryakumar Yadav did not fall foul to second-year syndrome, dominating again in the shortest format.

Yadav’s first innings of just seven to start the year against Sri Lanka was a mere speed bump in another prolific year, making scores of 51 (36) and 112* (51) in the next two matches. Consistent scoring in 20s to 40s continued, before an innings of 83 (44) against the West Indies in Providence proved his class. He ended the series against the West Indies with a knock of 61 (45) in Florida.

Yadav flourished despite the burden of captaincy, taking the reins of a young side towards the end of the year.

Suryakumar made half-centuries against Australia (80 off 42 balls) and South Africa (56 from 36 balls), before posting an even 100 against the Proteas off just 56 balls in their final T20I of the year in Johannesburg.

With a range of his inside-out drives and clever play behind the wicket, Suryakumar’s knock of 112 off 51 balls against Sri Lanka in January included nine sixes and seven fours, equating to almost a boundary every three deliveries.

His first boundary came off just the fourth ball of his innings, and it took just 45 balls to reach three figures.

The effort was the second-fastest hundred for India in men’s T20Is behind Rohit Sharma’s 35-ball effort against the same opponent in 2017, and India were clear 91-run winners.


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