Is Yuvraj Singh going to make a comeback? While the World-Cup winner is yet to make an official statement, butPuneet Bali, the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) secretary, has made a request to the veteran all-rounder to come out of retirement to play for the state team in the impending domestic season.
Bali's request comes amid the increasing number of players that Punjab have lost over the last few years. Among the few are - Manan Vohra and Barinder Sran moved to Chandigarh while Jiwanjot Singh and Taruwar Kohli has moved to Chhattisgarh and Meghalaya respectively.
Bali feels that Yuvraj's presence can help a young Punjab team in rebuilding. In fact, he has built a good rapport with team members like Shubman Gill, Prabhsimran Singh, Anmolpreet Singh, Abhishek Sharma and Harpreet Brar, after having taken a few closed-doors training sessions at the PCA stadium.
"These boys were all undergoing sessions with our physios and trainers to prepare [for the season]," Bali was quoted by ESPNCricinfo. "Yuvraj initiated sessions with these boys while he was in Chandigarh. Over the last couple of seasons, we've lost players to other states, many of our players to Chandigarh, Chhattisgarh and Himachal. So we felt a player of Yuvraj's experience and calibre could lend a lot of value and inspire the youngsters.
"The request I made was for him to consider playing all formats. But if he comes back to and says, he's available only for limited-overs cricket, for some reason, that will be fine too. I'm looking forward to hear from him soon. But as such, he's been working hard with the boys."
While Bali might be eagerly waiting for a positive response, coming out of retirement for Yuvraj might be a little more difficult. BCCI considers that a player has officially retired if given the NOC to play in overseas leagues. Yuvraj has featured in the Global T20 league in Canada and the T10 league in Dubai after his retirement last year.