Former Indian opener Wasim Jaffer said that middle-order batter Suryakumar Yadav needs to change his high-risk approach in ODIs because getting starts and throwing his wickets often will not help him cement his place in the side, especially with batters like KL Rahul and Shreyas Iyer waiting to make a comeback from their injuries.

India lost an ODI to West Indies for the first time since December 2019 as the Men in Maroon levelled the series 1-1 after clinching a six-wicket win in a low-scoring encounter at Bridgetown. Once again, Suryakumar fumbled an opportunity to make his case strong for an ODI World Cup spot as he could score just 24 runs in a tricky situation after getting a solid start. (Watch: Rohit Sharma Beats Yuzvendra Chahal For Fun, Virat Kohli’s Reaction Goes Viral)

“I think he will get one more opportunity in the third ODI and that is probably it. Then KL [Rahul] and Shreyas Iyer might come in and he will find it difficult to get into the side. The way he bats, he takes very high-risk options. He looks to hit boundaries; sometimes that is what makes his lose his wicket. He plays some outrageous shots, it is his nature to do so,” said Jaffer in a video by ESPNCricinfo.

“But, he needs to change that in this format, he cannot be looking to hit boundaries every second or third ball or in every over. In the 50-over format, you need to take the game deep. We see him do that time and again – getting a start and throwing his wicket away,” he added.

Suryakumar’s high-risk, 360-degree batting has won him a lot of acclaim and success in T20Is. In 48 T20Is and 46 innings, he has scored 1,675 runs at an average of 46.52 and a strike rate of 175.76. He has scored three centuries and 13 fifties in the format. He won the ‘ICC T20I Player of the Year’ award in 2022 for his performances and is also the number 1 batter worldwide in this format. But for Suryakumar, ‘SKY’ has not been the limit in ODIs.

In 25 ODIs and 23 innings, he has managed just 476 runs at an average of 23.80, with two half-centuries. Interestingly, Suryakumar got a solid start in ODI cricket. In his first six innings, he scored 261 runs at an average of 65.25, with two half-centuries. His last half-century was in February 2022 against West Indies.

But since then, it has been downhill for the batter. In 17 innings that followed since his last fifty, he has scored just 215 runs at an average of 13.43, with the best score of 34*. He has crossed the 20-run mark in only four of these innings. This also includes three successive golden ducks against Australia. India will take on West Indies in the third and final ODI on August 1.

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