Abu Dhabi: Mumbai Indians skipper Kieron Pollard was effusive in his praise for Suryakumar Yadav, who made quite a statement with a match-winning IPL knock after being overlooked for national duty, and said the batsman is driven by a "burning desire" to don the India blue.
After restricting Royal Challengers Bangalore to 164/6, courtesy effective death bowling led by lead pacer Jasprit Bumrah (3/14), Mumbai Indians rode on a blistering unbeaten 79 off 43 balls by Yadav to chase down the target and record a five-wicket win on Wednesday.
"It (Yadav's innings) was very, very valuable. We always spoke about one of the top three batters, or top four batters, bat all the way through if you are chasing, go all the way through and win the game for us. He (Surya) has done that more often than not," Pollard said at the post-match media conference.
"...he wants to do well and today again he showed his class on how well he can bat...and deep down inside the burning desire to don that blue, but again he continues to show consistency, which is all that he can do as an individual," he added.
Yadav was overlooked for India's tour of Australia despite his consistent run.
"At one point it looked like we were staring at the barrel at 190-200 and I thought we came back really well and to restrict a batting line-up like RCB, with wickets in hands, and the position they were in to 165 was well done to the bowlers.
"Bumrah coming back and getting wickets, Boulty (Trent Boult) as well, Krunal Pandya bowling four economical overs, so again, was a total team effort in terms of the bowl and restricting them was very good for us," he added.
He also conceded that getting AB de Villiers was crucial, else the momentum would have shifted in RCB's favour.
"Once we got a wicket, our spinners will come into play, and so they did and it worked for us. A couple of overs they got away from us again but we were able to pull it back.
"Luckily, I came on at that time and got the wicket of AB with an innocuous delivery that could have gone straight for six and the momentum would have been straight to them. A bit of luck on our side, but the guys really bowled well," said the West Indian.
According to Pollard, Mumbai wanted to come back stronger and get two points.
"We haven't got much time to think about that (possible scenario of five teams could finish with eight wins). Our main game today was to get two points, we went out and played really well to get those two points," he signed off.
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