Suryakumar Yadav was at his lethal best as he played an unbeaten innings of 79 runs off 43 balls to help Mumbai Indians beat Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) by five wickets and become the first team to qualify for the playoffs in the ongoing edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL).
During the course of his 42-ball innings, Suryakumar played many brilliant shots and earned rich praise from many former and current cricketers, including his stand-in captain Kieron Pollard and India head coach Ravi Shastri.
However, there was one moment that stood out during his fiery innings. After playing the last delivery of the 13th over straight to Virat Kohli at covers, Suryakumar took on the charged-up RCB skipper.
With Kohli charging towards him with a stare, Suryakumar faced him with a deadpan expression. Both players kept looking at each other before the Mumbai batsman just walked away to change strike.
“Moment of the Match,” tweeted one of the social media users alongwith the video of the incident.
“That stare game between Suryakumar Yadav and Virat Kohli says it all. He is on a mission. Not getting selected has seriously affected him,” said another user.
“Yesterday loss Virat. You are Virat but never stand for other #ShameOnViratkohli #BCCIpolitics. Well done reply by bat great #SuryakumarYadav sir. Never give up (sic),” tweeted another.
“”Na dhaan iruken la. Kavala padaadha, chill bro!” As much I loved Suryakumar Yadav’s strokeplay, I equally enjoyed the attitude he displayed on the field. Vera maari da SKY!” said another.
Suryakumar’s performance was preceded by a brilliant bowling display from Jasprit Bumrah (3/14). The win also made the four times champions the first team to enter the playoffs of the ongoing edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL).
Mumbai Indians continue to sit at the top of the points table with 16 points from 12 matches, while RCB remain static at second with 14 points from 12 games.
Fielding first, Mumbai Indians restricted Virat Kohli’s men at 164/6, thanks to Bumrah’s brilliance. Chasing the total, it was not as smooth a ride as Mumbai would have hoped. But Suryakumar’s boisterous show with the bat had no answer from RCB.
After the match, Pollard said Suryakumar will soon be rewarded with an India call up.
“Deep down inside he must be very, very disappointed to not have donned the blue for India. He just keeps getting better. Again as an individual if you keep staying consistent, you will be rewarded. Nothing happens before its time,” Pollard said at the post-match presentation.
“Surya namaskar. Stay strong and patient Suryakumar Yadav #MIvsRCB,” Shastri had tweeted after the match.