Yuvraj happy to be centre of attention

Updated: 10 March 2011 11:57 IST

Yuvraj Singh scored a third successive World Cup half-century to guide India past the Netherlands on Wednesday and admitted he was delighted to be the centre of attention.

New Delhi:

Yuvraj Singh scored a third successive World Cup half-century to guide India past the Netherlands on Wednesday and admitted he was delighted to be the centre of attention.

Yuvraj hit an unbeaten 51 as India saw off the Dutch by five wickets to virtually ensure a quarter-final place after three wins and a tie kept them top of Group B with seven points.

All-rounder Yuvraj, who became the first man to do the double of 50 runs and take five wickets in the same World Cup match in the win over Ireland, said he was revelling in his role.

"Last year was full of injuries and I was in and out of the team so I am happy to be in good form now. My job is to bat responsibly in the middle order and see the team to the end," said Yuvraj, who also took two wickets in his man-of-the-match performance.

"There is pressure in that situation but you keep your eyes glued to the ball and build a partnership."

Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni admitted his team had made hard work of victory after slipping to 99-4 at one stage in their run chase.

But he praised opening pair Virender Sehwag (39) and Sachin Tendulkar (27) for a quickfire opening partnership of 69.

Tendulkar also became the first player to make 2,000 World Cup runs in his career when he hit three successive fours.

"Sehwag and Tendulkar are the pick of our batting. We rely a lot on the start," said Dhoni before adding there is more work to do.

"There are still some areas we need to improve like the powerplay overs. And the lower order shouldn't have to come in to finish things off."

He was also happy with the form of leg-spinner Piyush Chawla, whose selection in the team has often been controversial.

Chawla took 2-47 in his 10 overs.

"Apart from the last over, Piyush has bowled well. We have seen patches of brilliance from him," said Dhoni.

Dutch skipper Peter Borren has seen his team lose all four games so far but believes the matches with Ireland and Bangladesh represent the best opportunity of winning some points.

"There are two games that are coming up which are big games for us - tonight will give us confidence," said Borren, who sensed a shock when India were 99-4 with slow left-armer Pieter Seelaar taking three early wickets.

Two of those victims were Tendulkar and Sehwag.

Borren said his side had a chance when they reduced India to 99-4 and a couple more wickets could have changed the course of the match.

"I am proud of my boys. Pieter Seelaar won't forget tonight. He came against a serious batting line-up."

Topics : Yuvraj Singh Cricket Anil Kumble Gary Kirsten ICC World Cup, 2011
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