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India's Suryakumar Yadav. Image Credit: ANI

Dubai: Former India cricketer Robin Uthappa believes that Suryakumar Yadav will be an X-factor for hosts India in the upcoming 2023 ICC ODI World Cup, adding that he is so happy for the stylish batter, who continues to achieve tremendous success in the white ball cricket.

The 32-year-old Suryakumar has been in sensational form and recently smashed his third T20I century during the series against Sri Lanka at Rajkot. However, despite his red hot form, he could find a place in the India’s side for the first two ODIs against the island nation before he became the part of the third game.

“In the upcoming World Cup, everyone can be an X-factor but I think right now at the top of my list is Surya Kumar Yadav. Although, he didn’t play much in the ODI series against Sri Lanka,” Robin, who is representing Dubai Capitals at the ILT20, told IANS in an interview.

Regular chances

“I definitely feel like players, who are getting regular chances will be feeling the pressure to actually keep performing because if they don’t perform, they can’t keep Surya out for a long time,” he added.

The 37-year old Uthappa feels Surya is currently batting on a different level.He also highlighted the certain skill of the batter, which makes him special.

“Surya is a multi-utility player, a very good timer of the ball and a sheer match-winner. He has been batting on a different level at the moment and is the only batter in that zone right home. As a team-mate, who has played with him in the past, I feel very happy for Surya because he has done a lot of hard work to reach this stage of his career,” he said.

Asked about who should keep wickets for India in the ODIs, Robin said that KL Rahul should continue the role.

“KL Rahul has been doing really well at No 5 in ODIs with bat and even keeping wickets well despite not being a full-time keeper. So, I feel the team might back KL and when it comes to decide one it will be between Shubhman Gill and Ishan Kishan,” the former India cricketer said.

Future captain

Talking about the prospects of future captain, Robin said that India have many potential leadership options, going forward.

“See, there are lots of potential captaincy options for India. After Rohit Sharma, Hardik Pandya is definitely ahead in the pecking order but going forward may be Shreyas Iyer and Rishabh Pant can lead the side well,” he said.

Uthappa also mentioned about the team team atmosphere at Dubai Capitals, which have players like Joe Root, Rovman Powell, Sikandar Raza and others, is fantastic

“The atmosphere within the team has been fantastic. The boys really got on well, I think we have got a great bunch of boys, a lot of them very highly experienced, real stalwarts in someone like Joe Root. So, the boys get along with each other, in fact they make the effort to get along with each other, which is very important,” he concluded.