Suryakumar Yadav was deservedly given the Player of the Match award as India defeated Zimbabwe by 71 runs in their final Group 2 T20 World Cup 2022 match in MCG on Sunday, November 6, 2022, to top the group.
His brilliant performance with the bat proved to be a catalyst for India’s huge 185/6 total against Zimbabwe at the Melbourne Cricket Ground after Rohit Sharma won the toss and chose to bat first. Rishabh Pant replaced Dinesh Karthik in the playing XI. Zimbabwe made two changes as well as Wellington Masakadza and Tony Munyonga came in for Milton Shumba and Luke Jongwe.
Indian innings saw Rohit Sharma getting out for 15 runs. KL Rahul continued his return to form and completed his second half-century in the T20 World Cup, but got out the next ball for 51 runs.
Virat Kohli was the next wicket to fall for 26 runs and Rishabh Pant couldn’t make an impact as he was caught brilliantly by Ryan Burl for 3 runs. Hardik Pandya and Suryakumar Yadav then added a quick 65 runs in 6 overs with Pandya falling for 18.
I Think The Plan Was Very Clear When Me And Hardik Were Batting Together, Be Positive: Suryakumar Yadav
However, it was Suryakumar Yadav who saved face for India as he slammed 61* in 25 balls with 6 fours and 4 sixes to his name as India scored 107 runs in their last 10 overs of the innings and made 185/6.
In reply, Zimbabwe was rocked early by Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Arshdeep Singh picking a wicket each in their first overs respectively. Ryan Burl (35) and Sikandar Raza (34) added 60 runs in quick time to recover from 36/5, but then Ravichandran Ashwin picked 3/22 and Zimbabwe was bowled out for 115 runs.
Suryakumar Yadav won the Player of the Match and said: “I think the plan was very clear when me and Hardik were batting together. He said we should take a positive route and we started hitting the ball and never stopped. I think the atmosphere in the team is really nice and so is the build-up towards the knockout, really looking forward to that game.
“My plan has always been clear, I do the same thing in the nets, I practise the same shots. I bat according to the situation and what the team needs. It feels really good, to be there (number 1 ranked T20I batter). You got to start from zero everytime, that’s what I think. It’s good to see people come out, let’s see how it goes in the next game.”
India won the match by 71 runs and will now meet England in the second semi-final of the T20 World Cup in Adelaide on November 10.