Expectation would be sky high but players would not allow the pressure to bog them down when India travels to England to defend the Twenty20 World title,star batsman Yuvraj Singh said.
The architect of India’s triumph in the inaugural edition of 2007 ICC Twenty20 World,Yuvraj said the pressure of coming in as defending champions would not weigh on his mind or that of his teammates.
“There is always pressure on defending champions. But our side does not get weighed down by expectations. We just enjoy playing as a team and,generally speaking,our form in Twenty20 cricket has been good,” Yuvraj said.
India will face Bangladesh and Ireland in the group stages and Yuvraj is happy with the teams for the event scheduled in June.
“It does seem like a good group. I wouldn’t say it’s an easy group because Twenty20 is a very unpredictable form of the game. On their day,any side can perform. I’ve always enjoyed playing in England the weather is great and the crowds are good.
“Also playing away from home,there is less pressure from the media. I’m really looking forward to the event. It should be a good one,” the left-hander was quoted as saying by an ICC newsletter.
Recalling his sensational form in the 2007 event,Yuvraj said nothing could really match the feeling after winning the title.
“Winning the World Twenty20 was the pinnacle and nothing can beat that memory or that moment. But it was not just me there were others that helped us achieve that. There were some real highlights,like the match against Australia,the game against Pakistan in the group stages where the result was decided by the bowl-out and obviously I enjoyed hitting six sixes in an over,” he said.
Yuvraj created world record by hitting England pacer Stuart Broad for six sixes in an over,soon after an exchange of words with all-rounder Andrew Flintoff.
Recalling the spat,Yuvraj said,”Altercations can have extreme effects. They can fire you up to play the right shots or can completely backfire. In that match I did get fired up and got it right mentally. I remember being in the zone. I was using the crease really well,I was still and focused. I could read and see the ball so well and the rest is history.
“As the balls came at me all my balance,focus and hand-eye co-ordination felt really good. They weren’t premeditated shots or just plain slogs,” Yuvraj said.
Twenty20 may not be a purists’ delight but Yuvraj feels the newest format has already made a positive impact on one day cricket.
“Twenty20 is pure entertainment ¿ the crowds love it and the atmosphere in the ground is always superb. It’s an enjoyable format to play. I think Twenty20 cricket has changed the pace of the 50-over game,so the impact it’s had has been positive,” he said.