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Suryakumar Yadav faces a four-way battle in India’s ODI World Cup squad

As India prepares for the Asia Cup, then the home World Cup in 2023, one of the talking points has been Suryakumar Yadav’s ongoing struggles in ODI cricket. Suryakumar acknowledged his poor performance in the format and failure to take advantage of the opportunities presented to him during the year after remarks from the captain Rohit Sharma and the head coach Rahul Dravid. With a stunning knock of 83 runs against the West Indies this week, the star India batter did return to form after a string of poor showings in white-ball cricket this summer, especially in the 50-over format where he hasn’t scored a half-century in over two years. However, it came in his preferred format, the T20s. Will his performance in India’s final white-ball match before the Asia Cup, though, make up for his opportunities in the ODI World Cup?

Four players are competing for Suryakumar Yadav’s spot in India’s ODI World Cup team.¬†Four players are competing for Suryakumar Yadav’s spot in India’s ODI World Cup team.

The team management saw the injury to designated No.4 batter Shreyas Iyer earlier this year as an opportunity to give backup option Suryakumar a long run and take advantage of his impressive T20I form. However, the 32-year-old did not capitalize on the excellent opportunity, managing only 127 runs over nine innings, including three golden ducks, no half-centuries, and only two runs over the 30-run threshold. Suryakumar’s average of 14.11 is the lowest among top order batters in this format among batters who have faced at least 100 deliveries and participated in at least 10 matches this year.

When asked if his success in this format will help him make his case for the ODI World Cup selection following his 83-run effort in the third T20I match against Rovman Powell’s team, Suryakumar offered a “honest” response.

“You must be truthful with yourself. You cannot slink away behind a bush. Before the fourth T20I began in Lauderhill, he declared, “At the same time, I’m not thinking too much about what’s going to happen ahead, thinking about this series. He didn’t get a chance to bat after openers Shubman Gill and Yashasvi Jaiswal stitched a record stand to secure a nine-wicket victory.

Suryakumar’s remark was made just days after Rohit revealed Iyer would be returning for the ODI World Cup. Despite rumours that KL Rahul and Iyer won’t be healthy enough for the Asia Cup, Rohit said that he is keeping his fingers crossed for Iyer’s recovery for the World Cup, guaranteeing his spot in the team once he is cleared to play.

During a recent event in the USA, Rohit had said, “Shreyas Iyer is on the road to full fitness, so fingers crossed for World Cup.”