Yuvraj Singh has become saint, says father

Mumbai, June 7 (IANS) Yuvraj Singh, glamour boy of Indian cricket, has become a saint after his cancer battle, says his father Yograj Singh, who is proud of his son's new avatar.

"Yuvraj Singh today makes me very proud and I thank god that he gave me such a wonderful son," Yograj told IANS in an exclusive interview.

"I wanted Yuvraj to become a saint champion. A champion who prays and then goes and plays well; he does not spend money on parties and all. Today, after his cancer, Yuvraj is a saint who prays and doesn't need money and cars. He has become an ordinary person," he added.

Soon after the 2011 World Cup, Yuvraj was diagnosed with a rare germ cell cancer near his lungs and underwent treatment in the US. He returned to India after three rounds of chemotherapy in 2012.

Yograj, who has four children, is truly proud of the fact that the entire country adores his cricketer son.

"I am a very proud father that I have lovely kids. People love Yuvi. I have never seen the whole world loving one particular person so much... But if they all are loved, I will be the proudest father," he said.

Talking about Yuvraj's performance on the cricket field, Yograj believes he can do better.

"About his cricket, I am disappointed! I believe he has just achieved 25 percent of his capability, barring his cancer incident. He has stayed away from his father right from the time he came into national-level cricket.

"He was not properly handled by his mother (Shabnam Singh) and friends. He has the greatest talent, but has yet to justify it. He will do it in the coming years," he said.

Reminiscing about the days when he was training Yuvraj, he said that everyone opposed him.

"That time people called me a mad father, a mad coach and my whole family deserted me because they thought I wanted to kill my son. My mother died because of all this and my wife left because I was an angry man," said Yograj, adding that he was elated after reading his son's book "The Test of My Life", where Yuvraj has given him credit for his sports career.

"Yuvi's book says 'I am there because of my father and he will keep on living my dream as long as he lives...'," said Yograj.

Yograj is into acting and has featured in Punjabi films. He will also be seen in Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra's "Bhaag Milkha Bhaag", starring Farhan Akhtar and Sonam Kapoor.

The actor said that when he was offered the role, he thought it was a joke.

"It is very strange. I believe that god writes your destiny. I wanted to become the greatest cricketer of all time, I worked so hard but it didn't happen and god gave it to Yuvraj.

"Then I wanted to become an actor and became a superstar in Punjabi films. Then I got a phone call and Rakeyshji said, 'I want you to play this role'. I thought someone is joking with me," he said.

"I felt very proud. This will remain with me as long as I live. For me, it is like playing my first test match for India. I got sleepless nights, gave me jitters, but I never felt negative about it," he added.

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