What do you do if you have just won the World Cup and defeated cancer? You come back in style, if your name is Yuvraj Singh. After successfully showing few glimpses of his brilliance in the shorter over series against Australia and West Indies, Yuvraj seemed to be back to mercilessly feast on the opposition’s bowling attack. South Africa was a new test for the youngsters; and the team relied on the senior charismatic batsman Yuvi to give the much needed boost to the team considered to be lambs abroad.
In a pale shadow of his aggressive, confident and authoritative self, he is once again in the ring facing doubts about his cricketing abilities. The old Yuvraj would stylishly enter the field with a confident swagger which itself would send shivers into the opposition. The helpless look in his eyes as he faced Ryan McLaren seemed a far cry from the ballistic southpaw we used to know.
It is surprising that it is now, during the end of the year that the middle order is exposed. With the top 5 scoring over 1000 runs this year, and often carrying the bat on, the middle order was hardly required to build an innings. In his last 9 innings, Yuvraj has recorded 4 ducks to his name. With just 2 fifties this year and a dismal average of 19.71 with 276 runs in 15 innings, this harsh reality must certainly be bothering Dhoni. The team and the captain are staunchly backing Yuvraj, keeping in mind his match winning all-round abilities with the bat and the ball. But should he be persisted with, considering other teams are slowly building their teams for the World Cup 2015?
It was quite unfortunate that Yuvraj had to miss out of the Durban game due to back spasms, since it was this very venue in which he blistered 6 sixes in a row off Stuart Broad during the World Cup T20 2007. Should he be given more chances or is this the right time to test the young blood in the form of Ajinkya Rahane or Ambati Rayadu?
The series is already lost and Team India has not got any positives out of the tour yet. Cricket pundits would blindly put down an out-of-form Yuvraj in the World Cup 2015 squad. After all, Yuvraj wasn’t exactly in crackling form (as well as health) before his consistent astounding blitzkrieg in the World Cup 2011 tournament. The World Cup 2015 is to be played in Australia and New Zealand which have quite similar conditions of pace and bounce like South Africa does. Is he the right man to wade off those short pitched lethal balls?
Yuvraj has bent his back while training voluntarily in France, played ruthlessly in domestic tournaments and tried his hardest at the international level. His commitment, demeanor and talent are far from being questioned. But when will he break the shackles and reincarnate himself?
The story of Yuvraj Singh seems to be right out of a fairytale. With a happy ending? We are hoping for one.