India and Mumbai Indians batter Suryakumar Yadav on Wednesday revealed that he battled three different injuries in the past three months but worked hard to become a “better version” of himself while going through a “boring” recovery process. The world No.1 T20 batter, who made his comeback last week in the Indian Premier League, revealed that apart from sports hernia for which he had to undergo a surgery and an ankle problem, he also endured an injury to his right knee.

“I had two-three niggles together, sports hernia, ankle and then right knee. I had to take one step at a time, follow the small things and here I am, really happy to be on the ground,” Yadav said in a video released by IPL.

The 33-year-old said it was “boring” for him to follow the same routine during rehab work at the start but he decided to make the most of the opportunity.

“It’s actually a little difficult to describe the last three (or) three-and-a-half months. It was difficult, the first two-three weeks, because I felt (it was) very boring doing the same things again and again (in) the rehab,” he said.

“But (by) the fourth-fifth week, I realised that it is important going forward.” A conversation with his wife was helpful in giving him perspective.

“When I spoke to my wife and all the people at NCA, they said it has to be a second version of yourself, you have to be a little different when you come back on the field. I started doing all those small things like sleeping on time, following a good diet – that was most important,” he added.

Yadav said time away from the game helped him focus on aspects he had neglected and that helped him recover faster.

“I (had) never read a book in my life and I started doing that as well. Getting up in the morning, spending a good quality time at the rehab centre and focusing on everything, connecting myself, my brain and my body with the rehab and it helped me really well to recover a little faster,” he said.

“I wanted to be a better version of myself, when I got injured, I realised what were the things I wanted to work on. I got 2-3 months to work on myself in terms of fitness and on my body as well,” he said.

‘SKY’ lauded the coaches and staff at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru for understanding and supporting him in his recovery phase, even when he did not like the grind.

“I am really grateful to the support staff at NCA, everyone, right from trainers to physios who took care of me right from the morning. They took everything, whatever I said.

“A few days I was feeling angry to do the rehab but then they took that in their stride and understood really well how I wanted to work,” he said.

Yadav, who had faced trouble clearing his fitness tests at NCA at the initial stage of this IPL, said he never felt he was not around the Mumbai Indians’ team.

“My whole cricketing journey started from here and when I entered the hotel and the ground, it never felt (like) that I (had) left this place,” he said.

“The first day when I did my practice session with the boys and everyone around, it felt that I was here since the IPL started.” However, Yadav admitted he could not watch IPL matches since he followed a strict routine.

“It is always difficult when your team is playing and you are sitting in the room and watching. I cannot say that I did not watch the games, I watched half of the games as I was sleeping on time when I was in Bangalore, at about 10:30pm-10:45pm,” he said.

“It was difficult but at the same time, it gave me a lot of motivation and inspiration that yes, they are playing there and I have to work really hard on myself and my recovery and get there as soon as possible,” he added.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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