Sun, 01 Oct 2023

Melbourne [Australia], November 6 (ANI): Veteran India bowler Ravichandran Ashwin heaped praise on "free-spirited" Suryakumar Yadav, who played the match-winning unbeaten knock of 61 runs against ZimbabweSuryakumar Yadav played yet another breathtaking knock of an unbeaten 61 from 25 balls followed by superb bowling from the bowlers helped India bundle out Zimbabwe for 115 to clinch a 71-run win in their final Group 2, Super 12 match of the ongoing ICC T20 World Cup at Melbourne on Sunday.

India close out the Super 12s with a comfortable win to top their group - they will play England in Thursday's semi-final at Adelaide. With four wins out of their five matches, India have 8 points.

Suryakumar's stunning knock was decorated with six fours and four sixes. India were three important wickets down when SuryaKumar and Hardik got together to build a 66-run partnership to take India over 180.

Talking about Suryakumar Yadav's knock, Ashwin said, "He is free-spirited, he isn't any spring-chicken even if he is relatively new to international cricket. As a bowler we always want runs to defend and he provides that. Some of the leg sweeps he played were terrific."Ashwin excelled with three wickets for 22 as India bundled out Zimbabwe for 115 and clinched a 71 runs win.

"It felt good (to get those wickets) and obviously it helps improve the confidence. I am not for numbers, I do the process and it felt nice," Ravichandran Ashwin said in a mixed media zone.

The veteran bowler said that he watched the matches there and has gleaned some inputs.

Talking about returning to this venue next Sunday if Team India made it to the final? "Well I hope so, that would be good. We had a terrific first match (against Pakistan) here and it would be good to get a match like that again," he replied.

Coming to India's match against Zimbabwe, Men in Blue posted 186/5 in their 20 overs after opting to bat first. KL Rahul (51) and Virat Kohli (26) put a 60-run stand for the second wicket, but Sean Williams (2/9) squeezed some momentum out of their innings. However, Suryakumar Yadav (61) made sure things finished well for Men in Blue.

Sean Williams (2/9) was the pick of the bowlers for Zimbabwe. Raza, Muzarbani and Ngarava took a wicket each.

Chasing 187, Zimbabwe never really looked like a threat. Except for a 60-run stand for the sixth wicket between Raza (34) and Ryan Burl (35), Indian bowlers had all the control. Zimbabwe was bundled out for 115 runs in 17.2 overs and lost the match by 71 runs.

Spinner Ravichandran Ashwin (3/22) was the pick of the bowlers for India. Pacers Mohammad Shami and Hardik Pandya got two wickets each. Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Arshdeep Singh and Axar Patel got one wicket each.

Suryakumar Yadav was adjudged as 'Man of the Match' for his fine half-century.

Brief Scores: India 186/5: (Suryakumar Yadav 61, KL Rahul 51, Sean Williams 2/9) vs Zimbabwe 115 (Ryan Burl 35, Sikandar Raza 34; Ravichandran Ashwin 3-22). (ANI)

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