India v Australia, only T20, Rajkot October 9, 2013

'Will try to take undue pressure off Yuvraj' - Dhoni

ESPNcricinfo staff
22

Even a proven match-winner such as Yuvraj Singh feels the stress of making a comeback, according to MS Dhoni, but the India captain has added the team will try to take "undue pressure" off the allrounder. Yuvraj, whose last game for India was against England in January 2013, forced his way back into the side for the home limited-overs series against Australia following a string of big scores in List A cricket.

"We will try to keep it as normal as possible because once you are back in the side and it becomes like a comeback scenario, the kind of pressure on the player [is immense]," Dhoni said on the eve of the solitary Twenty20 international in Rajkot. "It doesn't matter if you are one of the biggest match-winners or you are just making your debut, or are coming back. It is important to take the feeling away from the individual that he is coming back because what is important is for the individual to be expressive on the field, back himself, have belief in his talent, and ultimately that will show on the field. We will try to keep it as normal as possible and take undue pressure off him. Hopefully it will work."

Dhoni, who in the past has said India missed Yuvraj's ability as an effective limited-overs left-arm spinner, said the latter's return gave the side more bowling options. "Yuvraj is a match-winner and we all know that. He has always proved himself whenever questions have risen and also he is a big-match player. In tough series he does well so we are hoping that he will come back strong.

"He is looking good. In the net sessions that we had today he is batting well. It will be good to have him in the side also as a bowling option. Having one more bowler obviously helps. Apart from having five proper bowlers, having a few part-timers who can bowl, especially at this time of the year when dew might be there. We have more bowlers to play with so it is good for the team and also for Yuvraj."

On the other left-arm spinner in the side, Dhoni said while Ravindra Jadeja had performed creditably in ODIs, in the shortest format he tended to get a touch hassled. "It is not like he has done badly. Whatever bowling he has done in international games, especially in the ODI format, he has done well. T20 is one format in which he feels a bit of pressure, but we have to maneuver around it. Many times we have used him in the last few overs which puts a bit of pressure on spinners. We will try to use him in the best possible manner where a bit of pressure is taken off him and the other bowlers, who are in good form, handle the pressure that is there in the slog overs. We will share the responsibility and that will make it easier for him to do well consistently."

Rajkot has been getting unseasonal showers and more rain is forecast on match-day, but Dhoni said India had managed to get in some decent practice. "Considering the amount of rainfall that had happened, the groundsmen have done very good work. We have practiced as much as we could have today. Some water had seeped in under the covers but we have tried to manage it well and done what we could. We have got the most out of the practice session."

While keeping an eye on the weather, Dhoni said the prospect of dew would also have to be considered. "If dew becomes a factor then spinners may not get the same amount of turn that they would have got some other time of the year, so we will have to wait and watch. Dew may be a key factor because at this time of the year we have seen that at most of the venues we will have to fight dew."

'It will be an exciting series' - Dhoni

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • on October 9, 2013, 15:46 GMT

    Yuvraj has been incredible since his 1st big match against AUS in Kenya. The match in which Yuvi and kaif put the roar out of the English Lions is just out of the Blue. He was THE MAN in the world Cup Victory! After that fight with Cancer; Things like a come back etc are minor! May be a couple of years county cricket would have put him at par with some of the Big All Rounders of the game? Yuvi God is with You! and will keep you going!

  • on October 11, 2013, 0:38 GMT

    and yea it was the other way around ;-)

  • on October 10, 2013, 17:51 GMT

    but the reality tells something different.... what a comeback !!!!!!!!!..what a process to get free from pressure !!! hail Yuvraj singh (77 from 35 balls)!!1

  • ChaitanyaK on October 10, 2013, 17:41 GMT

    And Yuvraj took the pressure off Dhoni! The sweet Irony

  • on October 10, 2013, 13:26 GMT

    I happy that YUVRAJ SINGH is coming back.. I wishes him a great successful series

  • TRAM on October 10, 2013, 13:11 GMT

    People are having high expectations on yuvraj 'cause his 6x6 comes to their mind. But even at his best, he was ALWAYS poor against bodyline bouncers , outside off uncertain-corridor balls, and most importantly against spin. Like every other Indian batsmen he also failed miserably in foreign pace-conditions. His only preys are minimal-swinging medium pacers (where, agreed, he could be real terminator when he gets going). Just like how the world figured Sehwag's weaknesses, I am guessing Yuvi is also figured out already. I do wish that he proves me wrong though.

  • Naresh28 on October 10, 2013, 7:18 GMT

    @arrow011 - Yuvraj was instrumental in winning us the WC. His game suits the limited overs type and not tests. Some players have the patience and some not. I would not call Yuvi a flash in the pan cause to win the WC there are lots of teams gunning for the prize, the same with the T20 trophy they won in SA. Indian selectors know what they are doing and Dhoni knows which players to back in the various formats.

  • Arrow011 on October 10, 2013, 6:47 GMT

    I would always support Ravinder Jadeja more, he has grabbed all the opportunities in T20s, ODIs & Tests. He is a match winner, he has showed he could bowl so well in tests also, we need to make him play in all tests abroad as 2nd spinner. When Rangana Hereth could take wickets in SAF & AUS it is time we test the talented Ravinder too. Yuvraj is like a flash in the pan, he has gone out & come back so many times never to get established at all. He cannot play test cricket properly, what is the use of carrying extra baggage? Dhoni & Yuvraj are thick friends it is showing in the way Dhoni is supporting him. Had Dhoni had half of this affection for Sachin, he would have played till 2014 world cup also.

  • Naresh28 on October 10, 2013, 6:45 GMT

    Nice words from Dhoni - his ability to recognise situations makes him one of the best captains around. A thinking captain. The pressure will be on Yuvi as there is competition to make the team.Jadeja is rusty from the season break and needs to find form.

  • Rohit... on October 10, 2013, 5:36 GMT

    @ Himanshu Bansal: It is people like you who puts YUVRAJ under pressure... He doesn't need to hit 6 sixes an over to prove his potential...He is match winner irrespective of his form... even with the ball he can win matches...Just let the poor guy play.

  • on October 9, 2013, 15:46 GMT

    Yuvraj has been incredible since his 1st big match against AUS in Kenya. The match in which Yuvi and kaif put the roar out of the English Lions is just out of the Blue. He was THE MAN in the world Cup Victory! After that fight with Cancer; Things like a come back etc are minor! May be a couple of years county cricket would have put him at par with some of the Big All Rounders of the game? Yuvi God is with You! and will keep you going!

  • on October 11, 2013, 0:38 GMT

    and yea it was the other way around ;-)

  • on October 10, 2013, 17:51 GMT

    but the reality tells something different.... what a comeback !!!!!!!!!..what a process to get free from pressure !!! hail Yuvraj singh (77 from 35 balls)!!1

  • ChaitanyaK on October 10, 2013, 17:41 GMT

    And Yuvraj took the pressure off Dhoni! The sweet Irony

  • on October 10, 2013, 13:26 GMT

    I happy that YUVRAJ SINGH is coming back.. I wishes him a great successful series

  • TRAM on October 10, 2013, 13:11 GMT

    People are having high expectations on yuvraj 'cause his 6x6 comes to their mind. But even at his best, he was ALWAYS poor against bodyline bouncers , outside off uncertain-corridor balls, and most importantly against spin. Like every other Indian batsmen he also failed miserably in foreign pace-conditions. His only preys are minimal-swinging medium pacers (where, agreed, he could be real terminator when he gets going). Just like how the world figured Sehwag's weaknesses, I am guessing Yuvi is also figured out already. I do wish that he proves me wrong though.

  • Naresh28 on October 10, 2013, 7:18 GMT

    @arrow011 - Yuvraj was instrumental in winning us the WC. His game suits the limited overs type and not tests. Some players have the patience and some not. I would not call Yuvi a flash in the pan cause to win the WC there are lots of teams gunning for the prize, the same with the T20 trophy they won in SA. Indian selectors know what they are doing and Dhoni knows which players to back in the various formats.

  • Arrow011 on October 10, 2013, 6:47 GMT

    I would always support Ravinder Jadeja more, he has grabbed all the opportunities in T20s, ODIs & Tests. He is a match winner, he has showed he could bowl so well in tests also, we need to make him play in all tests abroad as 2nd spinner. When Rangana Hereth could take wickets in SAF & AUS it is time we test the talented Ravinder too. Yuvraj is like a flash in the pan, he has gone out & come back so many times never to get established at all. He cannot play test cricket properly, what is the use of carrying extra baggage? Dhoni & Yuvraj are thick friends it is showing in the way Dhoni is supporting him. Had Dhoni had half of this affection for Sachin, he would have played till 2014 world cup also.

  • Naresh28 on October 10, 2013, 6:45 GMT

    Nice words from Dhoni - his ability to recognise situations makes him one of the best captains around. A thinking captain. The pressure will be on Yuvi as there is competition to make the team.Jadeja is rusty from the season break and needs to find form.

  • Rohit... on October 10, 2013, 5:36 GMT

    @ Himanshu Bansal: It is people like you who puts YUVRAJ under pressure... He doesn't need to hit 6 sixes an over to prove his potential...He is match winner irrespective of his form... even with the ball he can win matches...Just let the poor guy play.

  • emceedrive on October 10, 2013, 3:49 GMT

    It's pretty clear that Dhoni has a certain sort of affection for Jadeja, but I just don't get it. He makes a handy spin option in test cricket on dust bowls because of how slow he is through the air and has some decent accuracy. But he is horrendous with the bat across formats. In limited overs he's useless all around. He comes in at 7 or so, and that low, you're only useful if you can clear the fence. He doesn't have the power to muscle the ball over, nor the timing to middle it with traditional shots. His bowling is only marginally more effective in limited overs than Yuvraj....I really don't see the point of selecting Jadeja when Yuvraj is in the squad. Better batter, just about the same usefulness as a bowler. Better off either selecting another bat who can bowl a bit or a seam bowling all rounder or a seamer or a specialist spinner, or....a towel boy. Anything really.

  • TRAM on October 10, 2013, 3:05 GMT

    People are having high expectations on yuvraj 'cause his 6x6 comes to their mind. But even at his best, he was ALWAYS poor against bodyline bouncers , outside off uncertain-corridor balls, and most importantly against spin. Like every other Indian batsmen he also failed miserably in foreign pace-conditions. His only preys are minimal-swinging medium pacers (where, agreed, he could be real terminator when he gets going). Just like how the world figured Sehwag's weaknesses, I am guessing Yuvi is also figured out already. I do wish that he proves me wrong though.

  • on October 9, 2013, 20:59 GMT

    all the best may the best team wins nd rain stay away from the match

  • nshant on October 9, 2013, 20:22 GMT

    Uv may repeat 6 sixes in a over if rain does not disturb.

  • nshant on October 9, 2013, 20:01 GMT

    Yuvi coming back in team will provide more left-right hand combination.

  • m812 on October 9, 2013, 18:12 GMT

    Rohit and Dhawan openers , followed by Kohli, Yuvraj,Raina, Dhoni, Jadeja is awesome batting power. If and only if IrfanPathan could get back his bowling form of 2004 -2006 it would be awesome because between Raina,Yuvraj,Jadeja and Pathan we have allrounders who can bowl atleast 10-12 overs and all of them are fantastic T20/ODI batters

  • erwin16 on October 9, 2013, 17:34 GMT

    @samroy..come on man..ain't cardiff,oval,edbagston are some the very true pitches..where jadeja had done reasonably well both with bat and ball.He is number 1 allrounder.Jadeja is an absolute sure selection anywhere in the world.His lines are tight and accurate,he is smart,he had started doing good with bat and he is fleet footed.A mediocre 'rather poor' performance in many of the dew hit CL 20 20 matches can not count him off.Rather India should try to look for a seaming allrounder for WC'15..Irfan and Rishi dhawan should be the guys who should blend in for that role.

  • SamRoy on October 9, 2013, 16:25 GMT

    I still do not understand why does Dhoni feel the need to shield Jadeja? Is Jadeja good on tracks which are true? No. He doesn't flight the ball and doesn't change his pace. Is Jadeja good on turning tracks? He is extremely good bowler on those tracks as he is very accurate and his speed doesn't allow the batsman time to maneuver the bowling; in fact he is the India's best bowler on rank turners.

  • on October 9, 2013, 15:34 GMT

    Congratulations Yuvraj on making a comeback into the side. All the best

  • Temuzin on October 9, 2013, 14:48 GMT

    Good Captaincy move by Great Dhoni. It will calm the nerves of Yuvraj and Jadeja.

  • on October 9, 2013, 14:46 GMT

    Welcome back Yuvraj. It requires a lot of courage to come through something of this nature. I was never a big fan of yours but your courage makes me want to salute to you and wish you all the best

    take care

  • naruto_senju on October 9, 2013, 14:45 GMT

    man doesnt he look fit now??? he become lean, fit.... and his dedication for game is incredible..... something i fail to see in gambir, sehwag, bajji..... zaheer will sure make a comeback...... dhoni knows whats good in UV.... any way 2nd comeback for UV .... hoping for the best knocks from him..... expectted high scoring game tomorrow...

  • naruto_senju on October 9, 2013, 14:45 GMT

    man doesnt he look fit now??? he become lean, fit.... and his dedication for game is incredible..... something i fail to see in gambir, sehwag, bajji..... zaheer will sure make a comeback...... dhoni knows whats good in UV.... any way 2nd comeback for UV .... hoping for the best knocks from him..... expectted high scoring game tomorrow...

  • on October 9, 2013, 14:46 GMT

    Welcome back Yuvraj. It requires a lot of courage to come through something of this nature. I was never a big fan of yours but your courage makes me want to salute to you and wish you all the best

    take care

  • Temuzin on October 9, 2013, 14:48 GMT

    Good Captaincy move by Great Dhoni. It will calm the nerves of Yuvraj and Jadeja.

  • on October 9, 2013, 15:34 GMT

    Congratulations Yuvraj on making a comeback into the side. All the best

  • SamRoy on October 9, 2013, 16:25 GMT

    I still do not understand why does Dhoni feel the need to shield Jadeja? Is Jadeja good on tracks which are true? No. He doesn't flight the ball and doesn't change his pace. Is Jadeja good on turning tracks? He is extremely good bowler on those tracks as he is very accurate and his speed doesn't allow the batsman time to maneuver the bowling; in fact he is the India's best bowler on rank turners.

  • erwin16 on October 9, 2013, 17:34 GMT

    @samroy..come on man..ain't cardiff,oval,edbagston are some the very true pitches..where jadeja had done reasonably well both with bat and ball.He is number 1 allrounder.Jadeja is an absolute sure selection anywhere in the world.His lines are tight and accurate,he is smart,he had started doing good with bat and he is fleet footed.A mediocre 'rather poor' performance in many of the dew hit CL 20 20 matches can not count him off.Rather India should try to look for a seaming allrounder for WC'15..Irfan and Rishi dhawan should be the guys who should blend in for that role.

  • m812 on October 9, 2013, 18:12 GMT

    Rohit and Dhawan openers , followed by Kohli, Yuvraj,Raina, Dhoni, Jadeja is awesome batting power. If and only if IrfanPathan could get back his bowling form of 2004 -2006 it would be awesome because between Raina,Yuvraj,Jadeja and Pathan we have allrounders who can bowl atleast 10-12 overs and all of them are fantastic T20/ODI batters

  • nshant on October 9, 2013, 20:01 GMT

    Yuvi coming back in team will provide more left-right hand combination.

  • nshant on October 9, 2013, 20:22 GMT

    Uv may repeat 6 sixes in a over if rain does not disturb.

  • on October 9, 2013, 20:59 GMT

    all the best may the best team wins nd rain stay away from the match