Yuvraj Singh ready for return to competitive cricket
Barely a year since Yuvraj Singh decided to call it quits on his cricketing career, a renewed desire to play the game might see the 2011 World Cup Player of the Tournament back to the crease before long.
If everything goes according to plan, he aims to mark his return playing for Punjab in T20 cricket once the postponed domestic season gets underway.
That's where Yuvraj says the spark reignited for him while spending time with youngsters like Shubhman Gill, Abhishek Sharma, Anmolpreet Singh and Prabhsimran Singh at Mohali's Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) Stadium.
"I enjoyed spending time with these youngsters, and talking to them about various aspects of the game, I realised that they were able to pick up various things that I was telling them," Yuvraj told Cricbuzz.
"I had to get into the nets to show them a few other elements, and I was pleasantly surprised at how well I was hitting the ball even though I hadn't held a bat for a really long time."
It was during one of these sessions that Yuvraj was approached by PCA secretary Puneet Bali with a request to reconsider coming out of retirement, under the reasoning that the youngsters under Yuvraj's tutelage were responsive to his inputs while the former player himself was in good physical shape.
"I gave (Bali's offer) a lot of thought, for nearly three or four weeks, and it was almost as if I didn't even have to make a conscious decision in the end.
"Obviously, Shubman is already playing for India, and I feel there's plenty of potential in the other three boys. If I can contribute in any way to their development and to the development of Punjab cricket, then that will be wonderful. After all, playing for Punjab is what paved the way for my international career."
With the decision made from his end, Yuvraj fired off a mail to BCCI president Sourav Ganguly and secretary Jay Shah to request to come out of retirement, stating that should he be allowed to play for Punjab, he will not seek out any international assignments.
However, he is still awaiting a reply to his application. "As things stand now, I will be playing only T20s if I get the nod," Yuvraj mused, "But who knows, let's see."
Following his stint with the Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League (IPL) last year, the then 37-year-old announced his retirement, saying, "It was great rollercoaster ride and a beautiful story but it has to come to an end. It was the right time to go."
Feature image courtesy: AFP / Noah Seelam