Cricket

Mental pressure will be tough to deal with: Yuvraj

Architect: Yuvraj Singh played a stellar role in India winning the 2011 World Cup.

Architect: Yuvraj Singh played a stellar role in India winning the 2011 World Cup.  

‘I don’t know if the 10-team league format is the best way winner can be ascertained’

Having won three Word Cups — ICC Under-19 in 2000 in Sri Lanka, T20I in 2007 in South Africa and the 50-over format in 2011 at home — Yuvraj Singh knows a lot about winning World Cup completions. In fact, in 2011, he was one of the architects, winning the Player-of-the-Series award.

Responding to a number of questions on the forthcoming World Cup in England at the ‘Best Wishes/Blessings campaign’ unveiled by the ICC’s long-term sponsor MoneyGram, and in particular, about the ten-team league followed by semifinals and final format, Yuvraj said, “ I don’t know if it’s the best way the World Cup-winner can be ascertained, but I definitely feel it’s a tougher format than the previous World Cups. Just to think that you have to play nine games, get points and qualify for the knockout, adds to the pressure. It’s going to be for all teams. I think it’s going to be tough to handle the mental pressure in this format.”

Important position

When asked about the absence of a specialist No. 4 batsman in the Indian team, Yuvraj said the question would be best answered by the selectors. “All I can say is that the No. 4 is a very important position and I am sure they have selected the team, thinking about the whole competition. There are a couple of options, we just have to wait and watch. You need experience at whatever number you are batting. All five (top) positions are very important.”

The former India all-rounder who made an impact in the short forms of the game believes that T20 and 50-over games are as different as chalk and cheese, but he is happy with the form of the Indian players picked for the quadrennial event. “MSD is in good form, Rohit is hitting ball well and so is Virat and Shikhar. If you look, 90% of the guys are in good form. At No. 6, Kedar gets less opportunities.”

On foreign coaches

Finally, when a question was asked about foreign coaches, especially Ricky Ponting being allowed to coach an IPL team before the World Cup, Yuvraj said, “I think Ricky Ponting is a legend. It is great for young guys to benefit from him. You learn so much. I am actually not in a position to say who should be coaching and not.”

Yuvraj picked England, India and Australia as the top three teams as strong contenders to win the World Cup.

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Printable version | Apr 2, 2020 8:02:42 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/cricket/mental-pressure-will-be-tough-to-deal-with-yuvraj/article27027391.ece

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