Yuvraj Singh Retirement: Re-Tracking the Cricketing Journey of One of India’s Biggest Match-Winners
Yuvraj Singh Announces Retirement (Photo Credits: Getty Images)

You knock him out, he will bounce back with a punch. In what better terms could one describe an illustrious 19-year long career of Yuvraj Singh. The 37-year-old announced his retirement from all forms of international cricket in an arranged media interaction on Monday. He is rumoured to pursue the freelancing T20 franchise leagues in different parts of the world.  Yuvraj Singh Announces Retirement From International Cricket.

Yuvraj won the ICC ODI Cricket World Cup in 2011 and the inaugural T20 World Cup in 2007 during his time with the Indian national team. He was instrumental to both the successful campaigns, winning even the Man of the Tournament award in the 2011 edition on home soil. Yuvraj Singh's Career Highlights: From Natwest Trophy to Winning 2011 World Cup, 5 Times Yuvi Rocked ODI Cricket.

Early Years

Born into a cricketing family – his father Yograj Singh played six ODIs and One Test match for India – Yuvraj was forced into cricket by his father, who threw away his skating medal and asked Yuvraj to concentrate on cricket. The young lad will soon embark on an incredible cricket journey that saw him reach new heights, which to a great extent it coincided with India’s journey to a cricketing powerhouse. He went on to represent Indian in over 400 international matches, hitting over 1000 international runs to add to his 148 wickets.

“Every time he held the cricket bat, Yuvraj looked destined to greatness,” said one of the cricketer’s former coach in an interview with a popular television channel. A prophecy that was fulfilled at every stage of the game. Yuvraj achieved success in every cricket division he represented India in. From the U-15 division to the U-19 World Cup triumph in 2000, Yuvraj was a star everywhere. He was declared Player of the Tournament for his impressive performance in the tournament.  Yuvraj Singh Retires From International Cricket; How the All-Rounder Beat Cancer and Emerged a Winner.

India Senior National Team Call-Up

His domination in junior cricket soon saw Yuvraj drafted into the senior Indian cricket team in 2000. He made his debut against Kenya in the ICC Knockout Trophy but only managed to bowl. Then when he held the bat in his first ever senior innings against Australia, a trio of Glenn McGrath, Brett Lee and Jason Gillespie, waited in the field. But again Yuvraj overcame all to score a magnificent 84 runs from 80 deliveries.

But poor form saw him out of the Indian cricket team just a series later. In his early Indian career, Yuvraj was frequently in-and-out of the Indian national team which not only impacted his performances but also damaged the great future foretold. In between those frequent start-stops, Yuvraj was also central to one of India’s most famous ODI victories abroad.

The left-handed batsman had a good tournament but wasn’t impressive enough. That wasn’t until the final against England. Chasing a mammoth total of 325, India were reeling at 146/5 with all of their giant batsmen back in the hut. Yuvraj was joined by another young prodigy Mohammad Kaif and the two romped India to a famous victory over mighty England.

At His Peak

Yuvraj’s rise in international cricket also coincided first with the emergence of Kaif and later MS Dhoni, with the left-hander involved in many memorable partnerships with two of his closest friends from the cricketing circuit. Yuvraj was a key figure under the tutelage of Sourav Ganguly and every other Indian ODI skippers that followed, including Dhoni.

His partnership, especially with Dhoni, was remarkable in taking India to newer unfathomable heights. The period from 2007 to 2011 was Yuvraj’s best time in the cricket field. Every time Yuvraj performed, India couldn’t lose. The first glimpses of the Yuvraj-Dhoni partnership was seen in the 2007 T20 World Cup where Yuvraj smashed Stuart Broad for six sixes before tormenting Australia in the semi-finals. Dhoni was at the non-striker end both times as would Yuvraj be when Dhoni hit Nuwan Kulasekara for a glory six to hand India its first World Cup title in 28 years.

He was the hero every time India scripted history. The main man to lead India to glory be it the 2007 T20 World Cup (Yuvraj was the most impactful player of the tournament) or the 2011 World Cup (he was Man of the Tournament). But that wasn’t Yuvraj’s only success.

India’s fighter-man was also fighting a fight off the field. In 2011 after India’s World Cup triumph news surfaced that Yuvraj was diagnosed with a cancerous tumour stage-1 in his left lung. He had battled India to victory despite suffering from breathing difficulties, nausea and bouts of vomiting blood during the 2011 World Cup.

Goodbye To International Cricket

Yuvraj eventually came back from the cancer battle in 2013 after undergoing a successful diagnosis in the United States. He fought his way back into the Indian ODI team but form had long deserted him. Despite, some great scores, Yuvraj looked to have strayed far from the cricketer he once was. Yuvraj also played for India in 2017 but his days in the Indian national team looked numbered.

Yuvraj finally retired from the game on June 10, 2019, leaving as one of the game’s finest all-rounders. At the time of his retirement, Yuvraj had already played 40 Test matches and 304 ODIs, scoring 10,061 runs. Yuvraj also played 58 T20 matches and scored 1177 runs. He still holds the record of becoming the first cricketer to score over 300 runs and take 15 wickets in a single ICC World Cup tournament. A true poster boy of Indian cricket, well done Yuvraj!