Big blow to India before T20 World Cup, star batsman out of the field till February: Report
Suryakumar Yadav has suffered a major setback in India's preparations for the 2024 T20 World Cup as he has suffered an ankle injury that could keep him out of action for up to seven weeks. The injury is a major blow to the team, especially considering Suryakumar's recent role as India's stand-in captain during the T20I series against Australia and South Africa. Reports suggest that he has suffered a grade-II injury to his ankle.
According to The Indian Express, Suryakumar had an ankle scan upon his return to India from South Africa last week, where he twisted his ankle during the third T20I in Johannesburg. The severity of the injury means that he will not be able to take part in the upcoming three-match T20 series against Afghanistan. These matches are important for India, as these are the only remaining matches in this format before the T20 World Cup. However, it is important to note that the players will be active in the Indian Premier League (IPL) ahead of the marquee tournament, which will be hosted by West Indies and USA.
This incident occurred during the third over of the South African innings. Suryakumar, who had scored his fourth T20I century earlier that day, unfortunately, twisted his ankle while chasing and blocking the ball after chasing it. The physio immediately helped him off the field and vice-captain Ravindra Jadeja took on the role of leading the team for the remainder of the game. India won by an impressive margin of 106 runs and Suryakumar was awarded the Player of the Match award for his outstanding century. He was questioned about his injury during the post-match presentation ceremony.
He said, "I'm fine. I'm able to walk so it's not that serious."
Suryakumar took over the captaincy from Hardik Pandya, who was unable to recover from the ankle injury he sustained during India's match against Bangladesh in the 2023 World Cup. It remains uncertain whether Pandya will be able to return in time for the upcoming series against Afghanistan starting on January 11.
Suryakumar displayed his extraordinary skills on his return to T20I after the 2023 World Cup. He joined the ranks of Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma as the third Indian batsman to cross 2000 runs in this format. Notably, his remarkable century against South Africa at the Wanderers put him level with Rohit Sharma and Glenn Maxwell for most centuries in T20Is.