IPL 2023: SKY dances with Gujarat’s Bowler at Wankhede as Mumbai thrashes the GT by 27 runs in a 200 plus run chase
On Friday, at Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai Indians emerged victorious over Gujarat Titans by a margin of 27 runs in the Indian Premier League match. After being asked to bat first, MI posted a total of 218 for five, primarily due to the exceptional unbeaten knock of 103 runs off just 49 deliveries by Suryakumar Yadav. Gujarat, in response, scored 191/8 with Rashid Khan leading the batting charts, scoring an unbeaten 79 off 32 deliveries.
As it is known to the cricket enthusiasts that Suryakumar Yadav had scored three T20I hundreds for India, he hadn’t been able to score one in the IPL. However, his recent outstanding batting performance in the second half of the tournament and his impressive knock of 83 against RCB at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai earlier this week suggested that he was getting closer. Finally, he managed to achieve the feat against the formidable bowling attack of Gujarat Titans, showcasing his exceptional form.
In the seventh over, the right-handed batsman came to the crease after MI skipper Rohit Sharma (29) was dismissed by Rashid Khan, who was bowling an impressive spell. The opening partner of Rohit, Ishan Kishan (31), was also sent back to the pavilion in no time. This led to MI going from a strong position of 61/0 to a less comfortable position of 66/2, all in the span of just five deliveries. In such a situation, most batters would have played cautiously and tried to rebuild the innings while being wary of the threat posed by Noor Ahmad and Rashid Khan. However, Surya is not an ordinary batter. He is a T20 specialist who can intimidate the bowlers by punishing even the good deliveries and can confuse the opposition captain with his ability to score from all parts of the field.
When it comes to dominating the middle period of a cricket game, there’s no better batter than Surya. Even the best struggle to keep up with his pace during this crucial phase. Additionally, his skill in accelerating towards the end of the innings is a bonus. After the two openers and Nehal Wadhera were quickly dismissed, Surya and Vishnu Vinod (who scored 30 runs off 20 balls) kept the run rate stable. However, when Vinod was out, Surya recognized that it was time to shift into a higher gear and go all out.
In the 17th over of the innings, Rashid Khan returned to bowl and Surya welcomed him with a precise sweep, sending the ball all along the ground to the ropes. Although Tim David attempted to maintain a high scoring rate, he only managed to score 5 runs off three balls and was Rashid’s fourth victim of the night. At the end of the 17th over, the scoreboard displayed 164/5, and Surya had scored 53 runs off 34 balls. However, in the final 18 deliveries, Surya went into a beast mode and punished Mohit Sharma, Mohammed Shami, and Alzarri Joseph with disdain, resulting in absolute madness.
The 32-year-old player achieved a score of 87 runs off 44 balls and only had six deliveries left to complete his awaited T20 century. Although this may seem like a challenging task for most batters, it was effortless for this maverick who confidently hit two sixes off the last three deliveries and savored the moment. The final delivery required three runs to reach the century, and Surya, as he typically does, kneeled down and hit a widish delivery towards the backward square-leg area. The ball had enough power to sail over the ropes, and he received a signal to remove his helmet and relish the thunderous applause of the audience. This venue was familiar to him as he had played cricket there since his junior days. His exceptional performance of scoring 103 runs off 49 balls, consisting of 11 boundaries and 6 sixes, was truly a masterpiece and serves as a reminder of why he is still the best in the game.
A while back, Surya was having a hard time getting even one run, but he persevered through his slump and has been on a roll ever since. He no longer resembles the same player who recently had a record of 0(1), 0(1), 0(1), 15(16), 1(2), and 0(1) in his name. The transformation truly began during a disappointing match against the Delhi Capitals on April 11.
In the latter half of the game, a different T20 superstar showcased his batting skills on the grand stage. Rashid, who previously dominated with his bowling in the first half, demonstrated his ability with the bat to assist Gujarat Titans in narrowing the gap between the two teams. The all-rounder from Afghanistan hammered Mumbai Indians bowlers all over the field during his unbeaten 79-run innings. He proved to be a challenging opponent for MI bowlers as he smashed 10 sixes and 3 fours.
Despite Rashid’s impressive performance, Mumbai Indians secured a victory, propelling them to the third spot on the points table, while the Titans remained at the top of the leaderboard.