Mumbai: Having endured some tough months recuperating from a nerve compression injury in his back, Shreyas Iyer was out of action for six months earlier this year before returning for the Asia Cup a couple of months back.
He started the ICC Men’s ODI World Cup with a zero in the first match against Australia and followed it up with 25 against Afghanistan. An unbeaten 53 against Pakistan was again followed by a couple of low scores before Iyer proved his worth once again with a 56-ball 82 which helped India post 357/8 in 50 overs against Sri Lanka at the Wankhede Stadium on Thursday.
Iyer credited opener Shubman Gill (92) and Virat Kohli (88) for laying the platform for India’s big score. He said the inputs he got from the two batters helped him in his knock.
“Virat bhai and Gill set the platform very well. After that KL and I came in and played our game. We got a message that the ball was holding on a bit, so we had to bide our time to play our strokes,” Iyer told the official broadcaster after his fine innings laced with three boundaries and six maximums helped India post a massive score after being asked to bat first.
Iyer said that it was a good wicket to bat.
“I think it was pretty good to bat on, it was easy to rotate the strike at the start and get my eye in,” said Iyer, who reached his half-century off 35 deliveries.
His blistering knock helped Iyer complete 2000 runs in ODIs, reaching the milestone in his 49th innings. Iyer made his ODI debut against Sri Lanka at Dharamsala in December 2017.
At the end of Thursday’s knock, Iyer has scored 2017 runs in 49 innings of 54 matches, hitting 16 half-centuries and three centuries. He averages 45.84 and has a strike rate of 98.19.
His 82 at his home ground on Thursday proved Iyer has returned to doing what he does best, giving a late boost to the innings thanks to his power-hitting.
He helped India score 97 runs in the last 10 overs, sharing a 60-run partnership with Ravindra Jadeja.