Yuvraj Singh Feels Hardik Pandya Will Play An Important Role In World Cup
Yuvraj Singh thinks that the new fielding format at World Cup 2019 will aid competent all-rounders.
- Yuvraj expects Hardik to play the role that he played in 2011 World Cup
- Yuvraj scored 362 runs and scalped 15 wickets as India won 2011 World Cup
- Yuvraj was adjudged the man of the tournament in 2011 World Cup
Yuvraj Singh feels that all-rounders will be very effective in the 2019 World Cup in England and Wales and Hardik Pandya will provide the Indian cricket team with an advantage as he is one of the best all-rounders in the game. The 37-year old Yuvraj thinks that with the rules in the World Cup, where a maximum of four fielders will be allowed outside the 30-yard circle between overs 10 to 40, players who can contribute with the bat as well as the ball will carry more importance.
"It's a five-fielder rule and part-timers don't get away with that kind of bowling, it's going to be tough to bowl the sixth bowler," Yuvraj told Reuters.
"But if you go with five (frontline) bowlers, then you know somebody has to bowl four to five overs maximum. If somebody is not bowling well, then someone has to chip in."
Yuvraj Singh is confident that the bowling all-rounder can execute his job when the World Cup starts off from May 30, similar to the role Yuvraj played to perfection in the 2011 World Cup.
Yuvraj scored 362 runs and scalped 15 wickets as India won the World Cup for the 2nd time in 2011.
"I was actually having this conversation with him," the left-handed batsman said of his Mumbai Indians (MI) team-mate Hardik Pandya.
"I told him that 'you have a great chance of performing really well with the ball and bat', the kind of form he is in at the moment. Definitely, the way he is batting at the moment, it is phenomenal and I hope he carries that form.
"He has been bowling well in patches but as I said it is all about how you handle the pressure... I just hope that Hardik has an awesome tournament."
After going through the most difficult period of his career in recent times, during which he had to deal with injuries and controversies off the field, Pandya has been back to his best in this year's Indian Premier League.
Hardik has been a vital cog in MI's march to the final of IPL 2019, scoring 393 runs at a strike rate of 194.55, and has also picked up 14 wickets.
India's wrist-spin duo of Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav has had lot of success in the recent past and Yuvraj implored the Virat Kohli-led side to include two spinners in their side during the quadrennial tournament.
"I feel we need to go with our strength," Yuvraj added.
"Our strength is that our spinners have been successful against South Africa, Australia and England and we should go with that. I would say go with our four best bowlers and fifth is Hardik."
Recalling India's exit from the 2007 World Cup in West Indies when the side were eliminated at the group stage, having lost two out of three matches, Yuvraj felt the new format would allow teams a shot at redemption.
"Playing everybody and nine games will definitely be tougher (but) it's actually going to work in both ways," he said.
"It's tougher, yes, but you also have an opportunity to bounce back. We lost the 2007 World Cup and suddenly we felt that we needed more games. Those times there was no opportunity to bounce back."
(With Reuters inputs)