Ahmedabad, March 24: The man who has dished out the ultimate answer to his critics and detractors, noticed with resounding delight how the tide has turned. "First time in my life there have been claps in a press conference. I am sure this is a special moment for me, guys," quipped a beaming Yuvraj Singh after taking India home in the quarterfinal of the World Cup 2011 against World Champions Australia.
For the fourth time in the tournament so far, Yuvi had won India the match, coming in when the game was delicately poised and carrying his bat through to a victorious end. On this occasion he stood tall against the might and menace of the Australian pace battery and even countered everything the spinners flung at him, coming out tops after an hour and half of grueling pressure. "The pressure was something else", said YUvraj at the presentation ceremony.
It was no small feat, guiding India through the last 12.3 overs with 74 runs required and just one specialist batsman in Suresh Raina for support. This is what Yuvi said about taking India over the finishing line. "I am batting really well since the England game," Yuvraj said. "The plans are working for me: trying to work till the end, trying to hit the ball down the ground, into the gaps. I just kept telling myself to bat till the end, stay till the end."
Yuvraj had put in an all-round performance in India's 80-run victory against West Indies last Sunday. His 113 in that match was his first century since June 2009. It was a knock of determination, as he fought hard to contend with the Chennai heat while dealing with dehydration, and returned in the Windies innings to take a couple of wickets as well
Even in the earlier matches in the tournament, he had played innings of courage and restraint to guide India through nervous moments against the Netherlands and Ireland when the onus had fallen on the middle order.
In conclusion, Yuvraj revealed that there was a special driving force behind his recent success. It is a person whose identity he will unveil if India make the final on April 2. "I am playing this tournament for a special person. That special person always comes into my mind whenever I am in a pressure situation. Hopefully it works out till the end."