Sports

India Vs South Africa, 3rd T20I: Suryakumar Yadav Smashes Belligerent 55-Ball Hundred

India T20I skipper Suryakumar Yadav brought up his fourth century in the format to power the visitors to an imposing total of 201/7. 'SKY', who is the world No. 1 batter in ICC's T20I rankings, smoked eight sixes in the third T20I against South Africa in Johannesburg

Suryakumar Yadav in action during the T20I series against Australia.
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India T20I captain Suryakumar Yadav accelerated when it mattered, coming up with his fourth T20 international century in the third and final match of the 20-over series against South Africa in Johannesburg on Thursday, December 14, 2023. (As It Happened | Scorecard | Cricket News)

Suryakumar Yadav, who is the world No. 1 batter in ICC's T20I rankings, smashed his blistering ton off just 55 balls, which was studded with eight sixes and seven fours. Even though he got out off the very next ball, 'SKY' guided India to an imposing total of 201/7 against the Proteas.

The century was a long time coming for the versatile right-handed batter, as had scored a half-century in the second T20I, albeit in a losing cause on Tuesday. During that innings, Surya became the fastest batter in men's 20-over international cricket history to get to 2,000 runs, in terms of balls faced. He needed just 1,164 balls to get to the landmark, easily surpassing former Australia opener Aaron Finch's mark of 1,283 balls.

Earlier, South Africa spinner Keshav Maharaj had given India an early jolt as he bagged the wickets of Shubman Gill (12) and Tilak Varma (O) off back-to-back deliveries. Gill was caught leg before, while Varma’s poor form continued as he was caught by Aiden Markram for a golden duck.

Before they were tied down, the Indian openers were on song as they plundered 29 runs from the first two overs with Gill and Yashasvi Jaiswal hitting the Protea bowlers all around the park.

India were asked to bat first after South Africa captain Aiden Markram won the toss and opted to field. India played the same XI as the last game, with Ravi Bishnoi and Shreyas Iyer sitting out again. Meanwhile, South Africa made three changes in their playing XI with fast bowler Nandre Burger making his debut, while left-arm spinner Keshav Maharaj and wicketkeeper-batter Donovan Ferreira too made their way into the side.

Playing XIs
India: 1 Yashasvi Jaiswal, 2 Shubman Gill, 3 Tilak Varma, 4 Suryakumar Yadav (capt), 5 Rinku Singh, 6 Jitesh Sharma (wk), 7 Ravindra Jadeja, 8 Arshdeep Singh, 9 Kuldeep Yadav, 10 Mohammed Siraj, 11 Mukesh Kumar
South Africa: 1 Reeza Hendricks, 2 Matthew Breetzke, 3 Aiden Markram, 4 Heinrich Klaasen (wk), 5 David Miller, 6 Donovan Ferreira, 7 Andile Phehlukwayo, 8 Keshav Maharaj, 9 Lizaad Williams, 10 Nandre Burger, 11 Tabraiz Shamsi   

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