Brian Lara risks angering Virat Kohli as he tells India to promote Suryakumar Yadav to number three in T20 World Cup

Updated - 08 May 2024, 10:30 AM

Brian Lara, India
Brian Lara, India

Former West Indies captain has risked angering Virat Kohli with his suggestion for Team India ahead of the forthcoming ICC T20 World Cup 2024

The legendary batsman has advised Team India to ensure Suryakumar Yadav bats at number three in the marquee event. While Virat Kohli has been India's designated number three in T20Is for the last one decade or so, Lara believes India will be wasting a key resource if they don't allow Suryakumar to bat at number three in the T20 World Cup.

With Virat Kohli not a part of India's T20I team from the end of the T20 World Cup 2022 till January this year, Suryakumar was batting at number three. He performed extremely well at that position, scoring 733 runs in 18 games last year with the help of five fifties and two centuries.

And while only time will tell whether Suryakumar manages to hold on to the number three spot or not after Virat Kohli's return to the T20I team, Brian Lara has said India should come up with a strategy to ensure that it happens. Speaking to PTI, the former batsman stated that the Mumbai star has the ability to win matches single-handedly if he gets to bat 10-15 overs in a T20I match.

"My one advice, and I don't know if you're going to like it or not, but Sky has to bat at three. He just has to bat at three. He is one of the greatest T20 players in the game. And you speak to players like Sir Viv (Vivian Richards), and he will tell you he used to want to get out there in the middle," Lara said.

"And I feel that that's the same thing with SKY. So, get in on it as quickly as possible. He is not an opener, get him out there and if he can bat for 10–15 overs, you know what is going to happen.

"He is going to put you in an unassailable position if you bat him first, or he's going to win the game if he is batting second. And then let everybody sort of position themselves outside of that, but a good structure is important," Lara added.

Suryakumar Yadav's performance at difference positions:

Suryakumar Yadav has a stunning record at number three as well as number four. The world number one T20I batsman has played 14 games at number three so far and has scored 479 runs at an average of 39.91 and a strike rate of 160.73.

His record at number four is even better. In 35 games, the right-handed batsman has scored 1402 runs at an average of 50.07 and a strike rate of 175.90.

Read More: IPL 2024 Points Table


Brian Lara Suryakumar Yadav Virat Kohli India National Cricket Team ICC T20 World Cup Balkan Cup