| Yuvraj SIngh, in Greater Noida, on Sunday. Picture by Yasir Iqbal |
Greater Noida: India discard Yuvraj Singh has declared that he is young enough to fit into the Indian team across all three formats and is working hard to make a comeback into the national side.
“I am going to be 32 and I believe that I can still play in all the formats... I have had good training during the off-season and am eagerly waiting for the domestic season to start. I have been training very hard and would now like to play a few local tournaments before the first-class season begins. I am really confident of making a comeback,” Yuvraj said on Saturday, during the inauguration of a branch of his academy, the ‘Yuvraj Singh Centre of Excellence’.
Yuvraj, in fact, had said something similar on Friday. “…I believe that a team should be a blend of youth and experience… I am not saying that past success should be taken into account while selecting a present team, but one shouldn’t forget what we have achieved for the country,” he had said.
Yuvraj seemed happy that of late, a lot of youngsters have been getting opportunities to play for India. “It’s a great thing that youngsters are getting a lot of chances and they should utilise that to the fullest.”
With India having a busy schedule involving all three formats, Yuvraj feels that pacers like Umesh Yadav and Ishant Sharma should be rotated so that they remain injury free.
“We have some good pace bowlers in Umesh and Ishant… Varun Aaron is also a good prospect. I believe that since we are playing in all three formats, these bowlers should be rotated and given enough rest.”
The all-rounder, who was the hero in India’s 2011 World Cup triumph, stressed on the importance of having a state-of-the-art academy for the budding cricketers.
“I didn’t have all the modern facilities under one roof when I was training to become a cricketer. I would practise at one place, then head off to a gymnasium located at another part of the city and then go for a swimming session. Nowadays proper training is very important and kids should get the facilities under one roof.”
Yuvraj further said that it’s not necessary to start early if somebody wishes to become a cricketer. “It’s not necessary that one has to start playing very early to make a career in cricket… Look at Zaheer (Khan)… He also started late and still he made it big, playing for the country at the international level.”
Meanwhile, in a 12-overs-per-side match between Yuvraj’s XI and Journalists’ XI, the former won by eight runs. Yuvraj hit quite a few boundaries before falling prey to a nine-year-old’s left-arm spin.