Suryakumar Yadav has received appreciation from Ricky Ponting, who compared the batter with legendary AB de Villiers. According to Ponting, Yadav possesses a 360-degree game like the South African genius.
Ponting suggested that Yadav should bat at number four in the Indian line-up.
"Surya (Yadav) scores 360 degrees around the ground, a bit like an AB de Villiers did when he was in his actual prime. The lap shots, the late cuts, you know, the ramps over the keeper's head. He can hit down the ground," Ponting said in an episode of The ICC Review.
"He hits well over the leg side, flicks to deep backward square particularly well, and he's a good player of fast bowling and is a good player of spin bowling."
The 31-year-old Yadav has scored 672 runs at an average of 37.33 and a strike rate of 175.45 in 23 T20 matches. He is now positioned at No.2 in the ICC T20 Batter Rankings, behind Pakistan skipper Babar Azam.
"He's a very, very exciting player and I'm sure someone that's going to find himself in their team, not just their squad," Ponting added.
"I think you'd find him in their team for the T20 World Cup. And if he's in that team, then I think all the fans in Australia are going to see a very, very good player.
"He's quite a confident person. He backs himself and he's never going to step down from a challenge or any situation that arises in a game. I feel he thinks he can win that situation and therefore go on and win the game for his team."
Asked whether Yadav would make India's best XI, the former Australian skipper said he has "played better than anybody else in the Indian team for the last couple of series" and should be slotted at the top order.
"It's got to be in the top four, I think. I said to stick with him (Virat Kohli) in his traditional spot, which has been number three," Ponting, a two-time World Cup-winning captain, said.
"For Surya, it's one, two, or four. I think he can open, but I think he's probably, you know if you could probably just keep him away from the new ball, let him control the middle part of the game outside the Powerplay, through in the middle, and if he's in at the end, you know what can happen."
(Inputs from PTI)