Yuvraj Singh is revered among millions of cricket lovers for many reasons like the Natwest trophy final heroics, 6 sixes in an over, playing an instrumental role in India lifting the 2007 T20 Cup and 2011 World Cup and much more. Yuvraj is still widely regarded as one of the finest white-ball all-rounders in the world who was brutally effortless.
Yuvraj, recently stated that his father Yograj Singh, a former India cricketer himself, prepared him to play fast bowling at a young age. The 40-year-old revealed his father used to bowl him on a 17-yard pitch with wet tennis and leather balls to prepare him for the fast-paced tracks, which aided him in the early stages of his career against Australia and South Africa.
“From my childhood, my father prepared me to play on the fast tracks. He used to bowl me with wet tennis balls, wet leather balls on a 17-yard wicket. He knew to play the fast bowlers at the international level you need to have a heart. He prepared me for this challenge that’s why I could face that kind of pace. Initially, the innings against Australia and South Africa gave me a lot of confidence," he said in an exclusive interaction on Home of Heroes, Sports18’s newest offering.
Despite the fact that the southpaw's assortment of shots allowed him to be effective against both spinners and seamers, he admitted that he struggled against Sri Lanka icon Muttiah Muralitharan in Sharjah due to his inability to read the spin legend.
“Then I went to Sri Lanka to Sharjah and there was Muralitharan. I was a decent player of spin bowling but playing world-class spinners was completely different. You are a young guy who was learning about the game, and I couldn’t read him at all," he added.
The flamboyant all-rounder further revealed that he went to the batting legend and teammate Sachin Tendulkar for advice on how to negate spin better. Tendulkar advised him to learn to play the sweep shot.
“I spoke to Sachin on how to counter these guys, how to play spin bowling? He told me to learn to play sweep shots. Initially, I got out several times trying to play these kinds of shots but later I started to dominate the spinners," said the former cricketer.
During his illustrious career, the 40-year-old scored 8701 runs in 304 ODIs for India, while smashing 1177 runs at a strike rate of 136.38 in 58 T20Is.