On the exclusion of Suryakumar Yadav for the Australia tour, Ravi Shastri has asserted that it gets difficult to get into a team that is highly talented and experienced. He added that the youngsters should be positive and keep working on their game to grab the opportunity when it arrives.
Suryakumar Yadav notched up 512 runs in 14 games for Mumbai Indians in IPL 2018 striking at over 133 and then, he followed it up with 424 runs in 16 games last season at a strike rate of over 130. In the ongoing season, he has once again played an instrumental role in MI's success with 374 runs in 13 games so far at a strike rate of over 153. Taking into consideration his performances, it came as a huge surprise when he was not included in the squad for the Australian tour, which created a huge uproar among cricket fans.
India head coach Ravi Shastri, who had earlier praised SKY on Twitter after his match-winning knock of 43-ball 79 against RCB, finally broke his silence on Suryakumar's absence in the squad for the Australia tour. Shastri asserted that the Indian team is currently packed with talent and there is no room for the right-hander to make the cut. He went to give the example of his own playing days and stated that there were players who were scoring tons of runs then as well, but they didn’t get the chance because the Indian batting lineup was packed.
"That's why we say to these youngsters - be patient. Like Suryakumar there are 3-4 other players on the fringe but when you have a team that is packed with talent and experience it becomes very difficult to get in," Shastri said in an interview with Times Now.
"I remember a period in my career when 1-6 in the Indian batting line-up everyone was certain of their places and it was difficult for anyone to penetrate that middle-order and yet you had some people who were scoring tons of runs in domestic cricket and knocking at the door."
Over the years, SKY has been quite flexible with his batting position, having played in multiple roles for Mumbai. Before this season, he often played in the role of a floater, where he excelled and finished the games for his team. Hence, he was handed over the number 3 position this season, where again he has shown his versatility.
Shastri suggested that players like Suryakumar need to stay positive and keep working on their game to ensure they can make the most of the opportunities when they come their way.
"For all the youngsters I have one message - be patient and when you get your opportunity grab it with both hands. That's the time you don't mess up. Instead of being disappointed be positive in your mindset that when you get the opportunity make the most of it. If you look at this team that's going if any of the players in the batting line-up had been dropped you would be asking how are they dropped," said Shastri.