AB de Villiers ^(https://lotus365.today/goto/https://www.espncricinfo.com/cricketers/ab-de-villiers-44936) feels that India batter Suryakumar Yadav ^(https://lotus365.today/goto/https://www.espncricinfo.com/cricketers/suryakumar-yadav-446507), the world’s No. 1 T20I batter, needs a slight tweak in his mindset in order to replicate his success in the 50-over format.
Suryakumar, who has managed to hold onto his spot in India’s squad ^(https://lotus365.today/goto/https://www.espncricinfo.com/story/india-s-squad-for-world-cup-2023-kl-rahul-in-tilak-varma-and-prasidh-krishna-out-1395914) for the upcoming World Cup, averages only 24.33 in ODIs, with only two half-centuries in 24 innings with a strike-rate of 101.38. Suryakumar himself has referred to these numbers as “really bad”.
“You guys know I’m a big fan (of Surya). He plays in a similar manner to how I used to play, but in ODIs, he hasn’t cracked it yet,” de Villiers said on his YouTube channel. “It is a tiny little mind switch that he’s got to make, and he’s got all the ability and capabilities that he needs to do that.
“I am very relieved to see SKY in the World Cup squad, I’m very happy about it. I hope he gets this opportunity in this World Cup. Looking at the balance of the Indian squad, he might not start, but a World Cup is a long tournament. So let’s see what happens then.”
‘Home pressure will be India’s big obstacle’
De Villiers also said that the best way for Rohit Sharma ^(https://lotus365.today/goto/https://www.espncricinfo.com/cricketers/rohit-sharma-34102)‘s team to approach the World Cup is to “go fearless” in their bid to replicate their 2011 home ODI World Cup win.
“I think India’s squad is incredible, really, really strong,” he said. “The only worry I have for India is playing at home. They played in India, they won. There will be huge pressure. That’s the only big obstacle in my opinion.
“But if they can get rid of that and just free themselves up, I see no problem for India. Control what you can control. But go fearless. Fearless is the word I’m looking for the Indian squad. If they can do that, they’ll go a long way and most probably lift that trophy.”
Asked about Sanju Samson ^(https://lotus365.today/goto/https://www.espncricinfo.com/cricketers/sanju-samson-425943)‘s exclusion from the World Cup squad, De Villiers said: “I don’t have to say much about him. We know what he’s capable of.”
“I’ve been on the receiving end for Royal Challengers Bangalore, watching him score 92 not out at the Chinnaswamy ^(https://lotus365.today/goto/https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/ipl-2018-1131611/royal-challengers-bangalore-vs-rajasthan-royals-11th-match-1136571/full-scorecard). The ball was flying all over the place. He’s also got the conventional cricket game and technique where he plays with a straight bat, plays the ball nicely. He’s got a good pull and hook shot.
“He’s got everything in his bag. It’s all in the mind and it’s a matter of adapting to ODI and game plans and the World Cup and the pressure thereof. So yes, two great players.”