Veteran India all-rounder Yuvraj Singh's credentials as a big match player has been established long before. He has time and again decimated bowling attacks the world over. And on Sunday, Yuvraj's hitting prowess was once again on display when the 35-year-old blew away Pakistan with his whirlwind 32-ball 53, which was studded with eight hits to the fence and one over it. The southpaw stitched also stitched a 93-run stand for the third wicket with captain Virat Kohli to power India to a massive total of 319 in a rain-marred match. In reply, Pakistan, who rarely looked in the game, finished on 164 all out in 33.4 overs to succumb to a mammoth 124-run loss (D/L method). Pakistan's target at the start of their innings was 324 runs in 48 overs under the Duckworth-Lewis method, but this became 289 in 41 after play was again interrupted by rain.
Yuvraj, who won the Man of the Match, said their emphatic win over the arch-rivals in the Group B game of the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 has given them a flying start in their bid to defend the title. Asked to bat, the Indians rode on a power-packed performance by the top order. Rohit Sharma (91 runs in 119 balls), Kohli (81 not out), Shikhar Dhawan (68 runs in 65 balls) and Yuvraj were the major contributors.
When asked to describe his feeling after the match, Yuvraj said: "Yeah definitely to get some runs on the board it feels good. We all batted well. The openers gave us a very good start. Virat batted well. I was given the opportunity to go out there and attack. I think you have to back yourself. You have to tell the opposition you are out there to attack and score runs," he said.
Talking about his blazing knock, Yuvraj said he was lucky to get dropped early on and then capitalize in the end.
"Depends on how you are feeling that day. I was feeling good today. Lucky got dropped and then capitalized in the end. Finished really well. India-Pakistan is always a big game. I think it sets up nicely. We will take the confidence and momentum forward. Our bowlers did very well throughout the game. We will take the confidence into the game against Sri Lanka," he said.
India will next play Sri Lanka in the second Group B encounter on Thursday.