Yuvraj Singh's father Yograj has always felt that his son should bat like West Indies legend Sir Garfield Sobers. In fact, when Yuvraj was a kid, Yograj, who played for India in 1981, used to call his son 'Garfield' which young Yuvi mistook for 'Garfield' the cartoon character.
Yuvraj gets an opportunity to meet the legendary cricketer on India's tour to the West Indies next month and is looking forward to an interaction. Sobers, who appreciates modern stars, recently visited the Pakistan dressing room and spoke to the players after a request from their manager, Intikhab Alam.
"I want to speak to him (Sobers) with regards to my batting, bowling and ways to improve them. I have to first sort my Test record," added Yuvraj, brushing aside any suggestions of being compared to the great man. India's World Cup 2011 star spoke to MiD DAY on the sidelines of a launch of OK India magazine's fifth anniversary issue at Landmark bookshop in Lower Parel yesterday.
Sobers and Yuvraj enjoy a significant similarity. The left-handed legend from Barbados hit six sixes in an over for Lancashire while facing Glamorgan's Malcolm Nash at Swansea in 1968 while Yuvraj performed a similar feat against England's Stuart Broad in the World Twenty20 at Durban in 2007.
In an interview to The Telegraph in 2007, Yuvraj had said: "When I was young, Dad would call me 'Garfield'. For a long time, I thought he'd nicknamed me after the cartoon character. It's only later that he explained the Sir Gary connection and added that his wish was I should bat like the legend.'
After a five-match one-day international series, India will play three Tests against West Indies from June 20 to July 10. Yuvraj is eager to cement his Test place after losing it on the 2010 series in Sri Lanka. "I am looking forward to cement my place in the Test side, especially after doing well in the 50-over format," he said.
"It is a great feeling (to go to WI as World Champions). It is going to stay there for a while. I just want to carry forward the confidence of the World Cup. There is a little gap in between (after the IPL). It will be good to regroup and then play in the West Indies, said the Pune Warriors skipper.
Yuvraj, like other senior members Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Sachin Tendulkar and Zaheer Khan could have been rested for the ODI series in the Caribbean. "Tiredness is there, but the three tours (West Indies, England and Australia) are very important. And if you win overseas, it gives you a lot of confidence," he concluded.