“We were travelling and there was a change in weather too. I had a stomach ache in the morning and also had fever,” Suryakumar told BCCI.tv. “But it was also a decider. I told our physio and doctor, if this was a World Cup final, how would I react?
“I won’t just sit out saying it’s an illness. So do whatever, give me whatever pills or injection you want, but just get me ready for the game in the evening. Once you go into the match and wear that India jersey, the emotions are totally different.”
Suryakumar couldn’t help but exude self-belief when asked of his success mantra. “I practice the same way as I want to bat in the match,” he said. “I believe in just one thing: go and express yourself. If my success rate is above 75%, why not? I just think when I walk out, if I’m batting well, then I try to carry that phase on and try and finish off games.”
On Sunday, while Suryakumar didn’t finish off the game, he had taken India to the doorstep of victory. Having slapped Josh Hazlewood for six and a four earlier in the 14th over, he holed out to long-on. By the time he was dismissed, India’s ask was a manageable 53 off six overs with seven wickets remaining.
“Every time I see him, he has taken his game a notch higher which is a good sign as a player. Whenever you see that you can raise the level of your skills of what the team expects from you, it’s always a good sign. I can see that in Surya, every game that I see of him, every game that he plays, he seems to be getting better and better every time. And today was an exceptional innings.
“To come out and play the innings that he played, we were two down in the powerplay. And to take the game away, literally, from the opposition was a fantastic effort. And not to forget Virat on the other side as well, what a crucial, crucial partnership, 100 partnership. From the team’s perspective it was a good sign.”