10 June 2019
Bhubaneswar: June 10, 2019 will be remembered as the end of an era when Yuvraj Singh, the most stylish striker of modern day cricket called it a day. While the all-round potential of this Punjab-lad was unmatched, it was his batting finesse which won hearts.
This formidable middle order batsman had the ability to give the finest bowling line ups in the world a run for their money. In the international format of the game, it is not often that we get to see six maximums in an over. That was Yuvraj’s power combined with class.
In a glorious career that spanned 17 years on the international stage Yuvarj had a close connection with the Barabati Stadium in Odisha's Cuttack. This classy middle-order batsman scored his highest ODI score of 150 against England in 2017.
That day on January 19, 2017, when India and England were pitched against each other for the 2nd ODI of the series, the picturesque Barabati was housefull. Slogans hailing Yuvraj reverberated round the stadium as the champion left-hander made a comeback after the tragic cancer-related sabbatical in the career.
Yuvraj did not disappoint his fans and hit 15 fours and one six in the 98 balls he needed to get to his century. He went on to demolish the English bowling line up as a piece of cake, scoring 150 runs in 127 balls.
The Cuttack century was Yuvraj's 14th ODI ton which he scored after a six year gap. In a post-match press conference Yuvraj rated this performance as his career best. “Probably, one of my best innings. The last time I got a hundred was the 2011 World Cup. I am very happy with the innings,” he said.
With a panache that few have been able to match in international cricket, Yuvraj was also a handy part-time bowler. With a golden arm, this middle-order genius was Captain Dhoni's man for breaking partnerships.
Yuvraj was an omnipresent force on the field. And today as he announced retirement from the most loved game in the country, his fans in Cuttack and Odisha bid him a teary adieu.