After Rohit Sharma and Ishan Kishan entertained the faithful Mumbai Indians supporters at the Wankhede Stadium with a 101-run opening stand, Suryakumar Yadav added more sparks in enthralling the crowd by hitting a 19-ball half-century to help the hosts’ chase down 197 in just 15.3 overs. After Suryakumar hit the joint second-fastest for MI in their IPL history, quashing doubts on his return to form after a lengthy layoff caused by ankle injury and sports hernia surgery, the batter said he was always on track to being back at his best self, which took a while before Thursday’ game. IPL 2024: Jasprit Bumrah Reacts After Claiming Five Wickets Against Royal Challengers Bengaluru, Says ‘I Try Not To Be One-Trick Pony’ .

"I think about the shots I play beforehand, because I have practiced all of them during the nets. I try to make sure that I bat according to the situation of the game. If the game is progressing slowly, then I think of how I could possibly speed it up. Whenever I go into bat, I always try to see how I can change the game and how I can control it with my abilities. If I succeed, great, if I don’t, I’ll try again in the next game! I think the train was always on track, it just took a while to get going."

"It’s fine, we’re coming back and have found our rhythm. It feels great to have won two games in a row at the Wankhede. It gives us great confidence and has improved the team’s atmosphere as well," said Suryakumar to JioCinema, the official streaming partner of IPL 2024.

The 33-year-old, who is the top-ranked men’s T20I batter, was out for a duck in his return game against Delhi Capitals on Sunday, but his 19-ball 52 – laced with five fours and four sixes – has signalled that he’s ready to bring more fireworks with his trademark shots piercing the field with great panache, especially with India set to play T20 World Cup in USA and West Indies from June 1 after IPL 2023 ends on May 26.

"When his mind’s free, he just lets loose. The sky is the limit for him when he’s batting like that. He can hit them and does hit them all around the ground. To be able to come in after a strong foundation has been laid by Rohit (Sharma) and Ishan Kishan, and just do that is fantastic."

"When he’s in the type of form like he showed tonight, the poor bowlers, no one can bowl anywhere. He’s got an incredible awareness of the field but then the skill to be able to manipulate the ball into those gaps, it’s freakish stuff. The Mumbai Indians are very lucky to have him," said Shane Watson, the former Australia fast-bowling all-rounder. IPL 2024: Zaheer Khan Hails Jasprit Bumrah for His Performance Against Royal Challengers Bengaluru, Says ‘He Is Surely in a Different League Right Now’.

With two back-to-back home wins, MI will next host defending champions Chennai Super Kings at the Wankhede Stadium on Sunday evening.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Apr 12, 2024 03:33 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website