Suryakumar Yadav had a rollicking start to his international career. On his debut game against England at home, his scoop shot against Jofra Archer was enough to prove his calibre. But making it to the Indian dressing room wasn’t easy for the right-hand batter.
Despite performing consistently in the Indian domestic circuit and Indian Premier League (IPL), Suryakumar had to wait long before he finally got a break. Days after cementing his place in the national team, he finally opened up on the disappointment he experienced before donning the Indian jersey.
Speaking with cricket presenter Vikram Sathaye, Suryakumar spoke about his long snub from the national side. He said he was certain that his name would feature in the squad for the Australia tour, at the end of 2020. Once he found out that he wasn’t considered again, it was a little heart-breaking for him.
“Almost half the IPL was over before that match (against RCB) happened. I still remember the Indian team (for the tour of Australia) was going to be announced. I had a good IPL 2019 and 2020 season, and I scored runs in domestic cricket as well,” said Suryakumar.
“I expected that I would get a call. It was not an arrogant thought like ‘yes, I am going to get a call’. But, back of the mind, there was this hope that the long wait would end.
“When I saw the squad, and my name was not in it, I was a little disappointed. From my side, I was trying to do everything. I took my wife to the beach for walks, and missed a few practice sessions, as I was thinking about that (not being selected) only,” he added.
The game which Suryakumar mentioned was against Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in which is still remembered for his staring battle with Virat Kohli and then, his celebration after guiding MI to an emphatic five-wicket win.
The 31-year-old said that was the game when coaches Zaheer Khan and Mahela Jayawardene asked him to utilise the opportunity to make a deep impact.
“One day, Mahela and Zak came up to me, and said that this was the perfect opportunity to prove myself as it was MI vs RCB. I said, ok, but back of the mind, I was lost and disappointed. I didn’t know what was happening even as the trainers and captain were speaking to me,” Suryakumar added.