Yuvraj Singh shows his mettle

India went into the third test match against Pakistan at the M. Chinnaswamy stadium, Bangalore with Sachin Tendulkar and M.S. Dhoni not a part of the Indian Line up. Sachin had an injured knee and was advised rest by the team physio whereas Dhoni had a split webbing to take care of. The omission of these two players made way for Gambhir and Yuvraj into the side.

Kumble won a good toss but decided to bat on a wicket that seemed to be grassy and would have something for the fast bowlers early on. A positive step taken by Kumble, hoping that the strongest batting line up in the world would prove their mettle against a depleted Pakistani bowling attack. But the plan soon backfired as India were reduced to 61/4 with Gambhir, Dravid, Jaffer and Laxman all back to the pavilion. It was left to Ganguly and Yuvraj to resurrect the Indian innings. Yuvraj who last played a test almost an year back against the West Indies, looked nervous to start with but got into the flow with a fluent cover drive to the fence off Sami. He cut, drove and flicked at will. A huge heave six off Danesh Kaneria which went across the ropes brought a 200 run stand between the two batsmen.

Yuvraj Singh went on to make his hundred, the third of his test career and all against the same opposition when he cut through the off side for a boundary. He leapt and punched the air, celebrating arguably his best knock. But Yuvraj was by no means finished yet. He played some exquisite shots with immaculate timing in his knock of 169 of just 203 balls. He fell to a leading edge off Sami, but at a time when he had rescued the Indian side off what could have been a potential disaster. The left handed once again showed that when it comes to flamboyancy and pure timing, he is in the form of his life.

This is the same man who had decimated the English and the Aussie attack in the 20-20 world cup. His six sixes of Stuart Broad was jut the fourth time a player had done it in the history of international cricket. After Sobers, Shastri and Gibbs he became the fourth to accomplish this feat. Even in the recently concluded one day series against Pakistan, Yuvraj was the man of the series. Yuvraj has been the most consistent performer of the side. Recently he had said in the media that every player wants to play test cricket and so does he. When he got the opportunity he made the most of it.

A reminder to the famed Indian Line up, no one can take his place for granted. Yuvraj has been knocking at a test slot for a long time and it is time the team management took notice. In the next test match against Australia, we could well see Yuvraj a member of the outfit in place of Karthik who has not been performing too well. Dravid could be asked to open to fit Yuvraj in the middle order. Atleast one member of the team will have to compromise as it is sure that after this knock, Yuvraj cannot be left out of the side.

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