April 14, 2010

When the brand's bigger than the player

Yuvraj Singh's celebrity is disproportionate to his achievements on the field, and his recent sulk brought that truth into focus
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It was a surreal sight. As victory was sealed, the bench erupted, joy and relief suddenly jostling for supremacy on those rows of hitherto tense, sweaty faces. Every man was on his feet exulting, with one exception. There was a moment when his knees flickered, impelled by long-honed instinct to hoist their owner in solidarity, but Yuvraj Singh's head and heart were in no mood to be dictated to by mere force of habit. He stayed put.

Punjab had just shrugged off their listlessness by beating Mumbai, delaying their victims' qualification for the IPL semi-finals, yet Yuvraj was plainly a man apart, a man alone, his glazed eyes turned inward. Had he forgotten he was playing a team game? The evidence seemed incontrovertible.

Here in Britain, on ITV4, the studio pundits were having trouble suppressing their gall. John Emburey, the epitome of the gnarled, old-fashioned pro, was seething: it was well out of order, simply wasn't on. Graeme Hick, who drew even more affection from his dressing-room confreres, was gentler, yet still made his feelings clear: you must enjoy your co-workers' successes if you want to play a team sport, he reasoned. After all, you won't always play a significant role yourself.

Not that Yuvraj is the only member of a prominent sporting team to have his community spirit questioned this month. Two Saturdays ago, the footballer Kevin McDonald, who plays for Burnley in the English Premier League, stoutly resisted the conventional responses to being substituted. At the time, Burnley were 0-5 down to Manchester City and being thoroughly shamed in front of their home crowd, albeit by opponents infinitely richer in resources; McDonald's embarrassment was personal as well as collective. He was livid with his manager for taking him off. So, instead of marching stoically from the field, or ripping off his shirt and flinging it over the touchline in a fit of understandable pique, he decided to leave the ground altogether. And head for the pub. (In mitigation, at least he chose one that was broadcasting the game.)

Two days later McDonald was fined a fortnight's wages. Repentance was fulsome. "I now realise it was naïve, disrespectful and totally wrong of me. It was a gross misjudgement and instead I should have remained… to support my club and team-mates. I acknowledge that I also showed a serious lack of respect to all the fans who were at the ground and who pay good money to watch their team play... I would like to reassure all supporters that I am fully committed to helping the team as we fight to stay in the Premier League."

As I write, two days after that Mumbai match, Yuvraj has yet to acknowledge anything, much less express contrition. By the time these words are read he may well have followed McDonald's example, though the signs are inauspicious. With attention focused on the middle, perhaps he imagined that nobody saw his (non) reaction to the victory. But while his misdemeanour may not have been apparent to the spectators, television viewers saw all. And he was arguably even more culpable than McDonald. At least every other member of that Burnley team felt as fed up as the latter did (they ultimately lost 1-6). Yuvraj, though, seemed in no shape to share in anything. Would he have behaved thus had he been representing a nation rather than a business concern? It is desperately difficult to believe he would.

IT DIDN'T HELP, OF COURSE, that, according to a story in the Times of India on April 2, Yuvraj would have preferred to have been playing for another franchise, having been ditched as Punjab captain in favour of Kumar Sangakkara. Purportedly refusing to play ball, Kings XI co-owner Ness Wadia, suspecting that Yuvraj might not lend quite all his might to the cause, was said to have urged the BCCI to have a quiet word. If the board did so (and they denied having received a complaint), the fruits have been undetectable to the point of invisibility.

Yuvraj, who has attributed his poor returns to the strain of returning from injury, vented his spleen via Twitter: "I am disgusted and horrified that a news reporter can stoop down to such a level. I, in all my career, haven't seen such a disgusting piece of news." No player, he reckoned, more than a little risibly, "underperforms at will".

Preity Zinta, Punjab's other co-owner, also expressed disgust and horror; Gautam Gambhir, too, sprang to Yuvraj's defence. You would therefore have been forgiven, after all that, for expecting him to join those Kings XI celebrations, however confused or unhappy he may have felt. As Alan Price sings in Lindsay Anderson's magnificent career-defining movie O Lucky Man:

Smile while you're making it
Laugh while you're taking it
Even though you're faking it
Nobody's gonna know…

Fortunately, the impending World Twenty20 in the Caribbean offers him a swift opportunity to atone, to remind us, not what Brand Yuvraj can do, but what Cricketer Yuvraj can

On the other hand, if Yuvraj truly cared about the bigger picture and the greater good, he certainly did an exemplary job of disguising it.

If the Times story is true, Wadia would have been better off cutting his losses and letting Yuvraj go. After Mark Ramprakash was relieved of the Middlesex captaincy in 1999, he grew increasingly disillusioned with the club and, the following year, resolved to leave. Middlesex were equally determined to make him stay, and had the contract to do so. Discussing the matter with Angus Fraser and Vinny Codrington, the county secretary, I implored them to be pragmatic: what was the point in trying to keep someone who didn't want to be there? The odds on the team benefiting, after all, were anything but promising. Soon afterwards, Ramprakash was released from his obligations. Given how little Yuvraj has done for him lately, Wadia would have been better advised to do likewise.

As it is, Yuvraj's pitiful, almost pitiable form, culminating in last Friday's non-jubilation, could so easily be interpreted as the hallmarks of a spoilt, sullen, stroppy teenager immersed in an interminable sulk. It would be easier to sympathise if he hadn't just signed to play the lead in an animated movie with the rather optimistic title of Captain India.

The plot, according to the publicity, finds Yuvraj growing up in Mumbai and discovering a magical multi-purpose "cricket stick", one that not only enables him to help India win the World Cup but also to battle crime. The film is co-produced by Cornerstone Sports and Entertainment Pvt Ltd, a management company whose clients include… Yuvraj. "Cornerstone has always made best efforts to promote brand Yuvraj as uniquely as possible," explained the press release helpfully. "This project is one such opportunity for Yuvi to reach out to the millions of children across the countries who aspire to be like him one day."

"Brand Yuvraj"? Maybe that's the problem. The cricketer has become the brand. In any event, if Cornerstone can claim that their client is a role model for "millions of children across the countries", one can only wonder what this says about their market research.

The sadness is the waste. "Yuvi" has so much to give. Already one of the planet's most destructive 50-over batsmen, those six sixes off one Stuart Broad over in the inaugural World Twenty20 three years ago elevated him to a rarefied plane. Now he was up there with Sachin and Mahendra Singh, potentially the most glittering star of the next decade, one of those for whom surnames are superfluous. Now that next decade has come and he has not really progressed; has not, crucially, become a five-day champion. Discerning judges, noting his impatience and impetuosity, will not be altogether surprised.

In December 2007 he made a fabulous career-best 169 against Pakistan in Bangalore, his first Test knock after those half-dozen fence-clearers, dwelling more than four hours at an international crease for the first time. His 20 subsequent innings have seen a rapid return to modesty: no centuries, more single-figure scores than fifties (six to five), 13 dismissals for under 30 and, all told, 583 runs at 32. Now younger men are being preferred. He is clearly not where he believes he could be, should be. Yet still the rewards flow, and still the celebrity grows. Grappling with that little irony takes some doing.

Fortunately, the impending World Twenty20 in the Caribbean offers him a swift opportunity to atone, to remind us, not what Brand Yuvraj can do, but what Cricketer Yuvraj can. The difference, on this occasion, is that he will be playing for his country, not an unloved franchise. There will be no suspicion of divided loyalties, no team for whom he would allegedly rather be playing. That's why, for the foreseeable future, international cricket will remain the best brand in town.

Rob Steen is a sportswriter and senior lecturer in sports journalism at the University of Brighton

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • AlokJoshi on April 17, 2010, 9:04 GMT

    Comes from the horse's mouth, pls read: http://www.yuvrajsingh.co.in/blog.php?blogid=28 Rob, I trust you will find it to be an enlightening read, and hopefully you will not have to wear your psychologist's cap! Rob, precocious talents have to be handled! They seem to do things that appear immature, whereas, in fact, they are more committed than what meets the eye. Yuvraj has a lot of cricket left in him, and i will not hasten to believe that his best days are behind him. BTW, did you observe Andrew Symonds' lack of expression of delight when DC overcame KXIP last night. While DC dugout was delirious with joy, Symonds seemed nonplussed. It appeared strange in view of his now kaput Australian career- his best cricketing days ride on the success of DC. Different people express joy, and despair, in different ways.

  • on April 17, 2010, 4:58 GMT

    i think Yuvraj has a problem with the team. so i think he should dropped from the team. he may be the icon of the team. but sometimes you have to drop icons as well. so i think Yuvraj should dropped. may be its too late. because panjab has only 1 game left. Im a big fan of Yuvraj. but i think he has some attitude problem and he think he is THE man, which he isn't. Panjab doesn't need him to win matches, he may help to wiin but they need a good bowling attack. If they want to win next IPL they need to buy some good bowlers for them. Yuvraj has talent, but he is not a good captain like mahela or like sanga (I think mahela would be the best captain for panjab) . so he has to live with it. if he cant makeup his mind then i think it is better to remove him from the team. it will bring good to the team. then team will play as a unit. this is my idea. i'm really sad abt the panjab and Yuvraj. but nothing to do. Team is more important than a player.

  • NKHK on April 16, 2010, 6:59 GMT

    What the hell is your problem! Leave Yuvraj as he is. He is a good player when he gets going!

  • BillyBlue on April 16, 2010, 4:57 GMT

    LOL Rooboy and Whiskas must surely be from Auz. Its the most hilarious case of a tiger claiming to be a victim of sheep attack I have ever heard. My stomachs hurting to bad and can't hold back the tears from rolling back, I am laughing so hard. I just have 1 point to make. Everyone knows Yuvi is a fringe player in the Indian Test side who future is highly questionable at the best, but what is Pointing's excuse for the way he behaves????

  • NKHK on April 16, 2010, 3:06 GMT

    I will be very happy for Yuvraj to go to another team. I wish he goes to Mumbai Indians.

  • Rooboy on April 16, 2010, 1:10 GMT

    Isn't Yuvraj's attitude just symptomatic of most indian cricketers in general? There are some guys in the indian team, Dravid for example, who are pure class, but most of them play the game with the attitude of over-indulged children. 'Give us the pitches we want, give us the umpires we want, allow us to racially vilify our opponents and get away with it, and if you don't, we'll take our bat and ball and go home'.

  • whiskas on April 16, 2010, 0:57 GMT

    He aint the only Indian player who acts like this

    The way I see it down in australia

    All Indian players except maybe sachin act the same way

    The Indian cricket team is a spoilt bunch of brats who always choke in world cup finals when it matters

    I love it!!!!!!!!

  • midnightsunknights on April 15, 2010, 23:19 GMT

    @Psyc_s - dude, firstly, yuvraj wasnt bought! he was the icon player for punjab and that exactly is the deal. the fact that he cannot leave his home team even if he wants to. what makes you thinnk yuvi didnt try to leave? what if they didnt want him to leave? he is not fake, and definitely isnt happy and it shows. he is still playign though. still trying to score runs for his team isnt he? now the fact that he is happy or not due to winning is not supposed to be the question. he is true to himself and to the fact that he tries. what the debate is- is the fact that he wasnt as ecstatic as the others were after winning. that's the whole deal, and i dont think i am buying it. yuvraj was not happy, but still tried and it ends there. as for the media, the love picking on him, and it is obvious. Yuvi is just not feeling as important as he used to and that is probably making him insecure. he'll snap out of it - hopefully, and eventually...

  • rajivnndn on April 15, 2010, 23:07 GMT

    I find people speaking about yuvraj that he is not as talented as players like badrinath and venugopal rao who are not even worth of playing as local players in their corresponding teams in ipl . I agree with the point that yuvraj is a bit arrogant and out of form and at times does not give his best. But i strongly disagree that he is not talented. He is very talented cricketer and proved himself many times by winning matches for india. He has been taken away from game by his increasing fame and earnings.

  • LukeTheDuke on April 15, 2010, 13:32 GMT

    I fully agree with Rob, youvraj is a spoiled brat by media, money and fame. But I want to mention one more thing, taking Mahendra Singh Dhoni name in the same breath as Sachin is a disgrace to later. I mean come on it will take another 100 years for Dhoni to be in same league as Sachin. He is more of a politician who knows what to say and do in public.

  • AlokJoshi on April 17, 2010, 9:04 GMT

    Comes from the horse's mouth, pls read: http://www.yuvrajsingh.co.in/blog.php?blogid=28 Rob, I trust you will find it to be an enlightening read, and hopefully you will not have to wear your psychologist's cap! Rob, precocious talents have to be handled! They seem to do things that appear immature, whereas, in fact, they are more committed than what meets the eye. Yuvraj has a lot of cricket left in him, and i will not hasten to believe that his best days are behind him. BTW, did you observe Andrew Symonds' lack of expression of delight when DC overcame KXIP last night. While DC dugout was delirious with joy, Symonds seemed nonplussed. It appeared strange in view of his now kaput Australian career- his best cricketing days ride on the success of DC. Different people express joy, and despair, in different ways.

  • on April 17, 2010, 4:58 GMT

    i think Yuvraj has a problem with the team. so i think he should dropped from the team. he may be the icon of the team. but sometimes you have to drop icons as well. so i think Yuvraj should dropped. may be its too late. because panjab has only 1 game left. Im a big fan of Yuvraj. but i think he has some attitude problem and he think he is THE man, which he isn't. Panjab doesn't need him to win matches, he may help to wiin but they need a good bowling attack. If they want to win next IPL they need to buy some good bowlers for them. Yuvraj has talent, but he is not a good captain like mahela or like sanga (I think mahela would be the best captain for panjab) . so he has to live with it. if he cant makeup his mind then i think it is better to remove him from the team. it will bring good to the team. then team will play as a unit. this is my idea. i'm really sad abt the panjab and Yuvraj. but nothing to do. Team is more important than a player.

  • NKHK on April 16, 2010, 6:59 GMT

    What the hell is your problem! Leave Yuvraj as he is. He is a good player when he gets going!

  • BillyBlue on April 16, 2010, 4:57 GMT

    LOL Rooboy and Whiskas must surely be from Auz. Its the most hilarious case of a tiger claiming to be a victim of sheep attack I have ever heard. My stomachs hurting to bad and can't hold back the tears from rolling back, I am laughing so hard. I just have 1 point to make. Everyone knows Yuvi is a fringe player in the Indian Test side who future is highly questionable at the best, but what is Pointing's excuse for the way he behaves????

  • NKHK on April 16, 2010, 3:06 GMT

    I will be very happy for Yuvraj to go to another team. I wish he goes to Mumbai Indians.

  • Rooboy on April 16, 2010, 1:10 GMT

    Isn't Yuvraj's attitude just symptomatic of most indian cricketers in general? There are some guys in the indian team, Dravid for example, who are pure class, but most of them play the game with the attitude of over-indulged children. 'Give us the pitches we want, give us the umpires we want, allow us to racially vilify our opponents and get away with it, and if you don't, we'll take our bat and ball and go home'.

  • whiskas on April 16, 2010, 0:57 GMT

    He aint the only Indian player who acts like this

    The way I see it down in australia

    All Indian players except maybe sachin act the same way

    The Indian cricket team is a spoilt bunch of brats who always choke in world cup finals when it matters

    I love it!!!!!!!!

  • midnightsunknights on April 15, 2010, 23:19 GMT

    @Psyc_s - dude, firstly, yuvraj wasnt bought! he was the icon player for punjab and that exactly is the deal. the fact that he cannot leave his home team even if he wants to. what makes you thinnk yuvi didnt try to leave? what if they didnt want him to leave? he is not fake, and definitely isnt happy and it shows. he is still playign though. still trying to score runs for his team isnt he? now the fact that he is happy or not due to winning is not supposed to be the question. he is true to himself and to the fact that he tries. what the debate is- is the fact that he wasnt as ecstatic as the others were after winning. that's the whole deal, and i dont think i am buying it. yuvraj was not happy, but still tried and it ends there. as for the media, the love picking on him, and it is obvious. Yuvi is just not feeling as important as he used to and that is probably making him insecure. he'll snap out of it - hopefully, and eventually...

  • rajivnndn on April 15, 2010, 23:07 GMT

    I find people speaking about yuvraj that he is not as talented as players like badrinath and venugopal rao who are not even worth of playing as local players in their corresponding teams in ipl . I agree with the point that yuvraj is a bit arrogant and out of form and at times does not give his best. But i strongly disagree that he is not talented. He is very talented cricketer and proved himself many times by winning matches for india. He has been taken away from game by his increasing fame and earnings.

  • LukeTheDuke on April 15, 2010, 13:32 GMT

    I fully agree with Rob, youvraj is a spoiled brat by media, money and fame. But I want to mention one more thing, taking Mahendra Singh Dhoni name in the same breath as Sachin is a disgrace to later. I mean come on it will take another 100 years for Dhoni to be in same league as Sachin. He is more of a politician who knows what to say and do in public.

  • Dhoni_fan_from_a_dada_era on April 15, 2010, 13:28 GMT

    its amazing to see people talk such trash about Yuvi on this forum(i am not talking about the article as it puts forth its poin tquite sensibly). But these same fellas will be jumping in joy when Yuvi will construct a win. Someoen even compared Yuvi with Ganguly!! yes both are proud players and have made their country proud. Definitely Yuvi was treated wrongly by some idiot owners. He wants to leave and so be it. I wish he plays for Pune/ Kochi next year and shows the world what he's capable of.

  • on April 15, 2010, 11:45 GMT

    I met Yuvraj and Kaif in Hilton in Colombo. Yuvraj spoke quite well for 15 min. Kaif was having his feet on table and watching TV... I don't believe Yuvraj is arrogant though he may look like he is.

  • vin77 on April 15, 2010, 9:17 GMT

    Yuvraj has been lucky to get the run that he has got so far.More talented players with better records like Badrinath,Venugopal Rao,Amol Majumdar never got a look in like Yuvraj.Poor Badrinath got a chance thanks to Srikanth but clearly past his prime.Where as Venugopal Rao got a few chances batting down the order & was dumped at the earliest.Yuvraj inspite of failures & inconsistency has got a run he clearly he does not deserve given the talent the country has.It will not be out of place to say that it is not only Yuvraj there are others as well,like Kaif,Agarkar to a great extent Harbhajan as well.

  • on April 15, 2010, 9:02 GMT

    there is a good reality in this article ,yuvraj is arrogant. and probably this is the reason why he sometimes does'nt gives his 100% in the field....

  • sashi94 on April 15, 2010, 6:42 GMT

    I would have to agree with the article that Yuvraj singh just like Harbhajan is a spoiled brat and very selfish. He is arrogant and not captaincy material. I saw what he did after the win against mumbai (did not celebrate with teammates in huddle). But to say that his celebrity is disproportionate with his talents?? I would disagree. putting ipl 3 aside, i can tell you he is a player to watch in cricket. I am not so stupid to follow this guy without any talent.. he is probably the most talented Indian cricket after Sachin. his work ethic is probably the lowest in world cricket.

  • on April 15, 2010, 6:04 GMT

    Yuvraj is a phenomenal T20 talent and probably better at that format of cricket than either Mahela or Sanga (though probably not on current form), but captaincy is a different matter altogether. Both Sangakkara and Jayawardene are proven leaders at international level, something that cannot be said for Yuvraj, who has never really been in contention for captaining the Indian side. After an abysmal showing in IPL2, it would be well within the rights of the owners of the franchise to go for a change in leadership, regardless of whether the owners know anything about cricket - and they have picked a man who is a current international captain, a complete professional, and a man who knows what he's doing in Sanga. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for Yuvraj for the time being.

  • Woody111 on April 15, 2010, 5:41 GMT

    Who cares how intelligent Yuvraj is or that he knows when the cameras are on him? He is a child; a very arrogant one filled with self-declared entitlement from hitting a bunch of sixes. The way he conducts himself in the IPL you'd think he was making 100 after 100. He sulks and is lazy and has done nothing to warrant an attitude of 'I've accomplished something'. The way he behaves he should be playing with another idiot; Ganguly. You can picture the two most selfish and arrogant Indian cricketers strutting around with their noses up teling their teammates that they're hopeless. How come so few Indian players observe and imitate guys like Lazman, Dravid and Tendulkar? Sreesanth, Harbjan, Yuvraj, Ganguly all seem to worship the ground they walk on! Get over yourselves and just play the game; it's worked for players far more talented than you.

  • Psyc_s on April 15, 2010, 3:28 GMT

    @midnightsunknights - Friend, he definitely knows where the camera is and he just wanted to show only that grim face to the camera and that is what the exact problem with him...I accept your comment "he cannot just go off showing his teeth to the camera if he isnt genuinely happy"...but, if he is not really happy and being true to his emotions why can't he return back his pay cheque and take rest? You have to be true to yourself or the boss who bought you for so much money, you simply can't double cross a person who bought you in auction...Yuvi is just geting paranoid, but he will come out of it...All the best Yuvi...

  • DeepCower on April 15, 2010, 2:56 GMT

    I get the feeling that the entire article was constructed to drive the last point home. If so, done wonderfully well indeed.

  • BillyCC on April 14, 2010, 23:35 GMT

    I have never rated Yuvraj Singh simply because of his weak attitude, poor batting technique and overall, his waste. I would even disagree with those who say he has talent. You can't say that someone has talent if they have the ability to score quickly. Anyone can score quickly if they don't mind giving their wicket away. In Yuvraj's case, he does't mind enough. The fact is, there is no place in the team for him; India have a player already called Sehwag who is five times a better player than Yuvraj Singh.

  • on April 14, 2010, 22:08 GMT

    Yuvraj sometimes reminds me of Vegeta from the animated series Dragon Ball Z. The character is arrogant, selfish and has too much pride. The arrogance keeps Vegeta from letting fear get to him while facing his enemies, and his pride only makes him want to reach greater heights when he fails miserably while facing his enemies. We've seen Yuvraj do the same in the past (but only to become ordinary all too soon), but pride and arrogance do have their benefits, if used "wisely".

  • Ramkis on April 14, 2010, 21:33 GMT

    Now its time to recollect my fav line "With great powers come great responsibilities". Playing for your team is a great power which a player should perform responsibly. UV had a very good opportunity to become the next captain. Because of his out field activities and his worst temperament, he lost it to Dhoni. After that his performance started declining with some excellent knocks in between. I always try to look up to Sachin for his commitment he had to the game. Natural abilities would have helped lot of players including Sachin start the career. But to continue and give your 100% to the game even after 20 yrs is really awesome. Take 100 bows SACHIN!!! We Indians have memory loss that even a couple of good performances by UV would make us forget about these things. Good Luck UV.

  • _NEUTRAL_Fan_ on April 14, 2010, 20:51 GMT

    It is no secret to the cricket world that Indian cricketers are the most, worshipped, revered, admired, swamped, paid, promoted cricketers in the world. This is neither a bad thing nor a good thing. What is bad is the fact that players like Yuraj don't handle it well and succumb to being spoilt, arrogant and self-centered. He is an incredible talent but his attitude is what keeps him from achieving what less talented players like Chanderpaul, Collingwood and even Kumble have achieved. There is nothing wrong with having a strut but it is one that must be EARNED, on the field...not off it!

  • midnightsunknights on April 14, 2010, 20:45 GMT

    cont...

    the point here is that he may not be satisfied with the managment, but is still trying his best to deliver for the sake of the team and himself. what the media's problem is, is that they want him to be sreesanth when KIXP wins! they want him to be SRT in his humbleness, and Rahul Dravid in his politeness... but he isnt, and everyone needs to accept that. he is Yuvraj singh, who has his own personality, whether good or not, for some, he is who he is. he doesnt fake it like others, and he isnt as humble as others. he just is himself, and no one has the right to expect more of him than he really is. if he isnt as happy as others were (i.e. jayawardene and sreesath) then it doesnt show anything but the fact that he isnt as dedicated as they were! still, he is playing, and trying. it is what is needed, and what he must do... Yuvi doenst need to satisfy anyone's thoughts, but his own; and i'm pretty darn sure he is.that is all that matters and should matter-to the fans and media.

  • midnightsunknights on April 14, 2010, 20:40 GMT

    it's getting increasingly painful to readany cricinfo articles nowadays. this article really is a stab to yuvraj, which isnt fair in any given circulmstance...

    yuvi is intelligent; he knows when the camera is on him, and knows that if he acted that way after a win, it would only ignite more rumours! for pity's sake, he isnt a child! he has been in the int circuit for as long as you have probably written! we dont know why he did that, it could be somthing else...

    the fact is, whether or not he is happy in KIXP, i dont think it really is his fault if he doesnt want to stay in the team. when an owner who knows nothing about the game, takes away what you truly deserve, then there is bound to be conflicts. the fact that he is still trying (i have no doubt on that) and working for the team to win is enough to say about his involvement. he cannot just go off showing his teeth to the camera if he isnt genuinely happy!

  • NikhilPapad3 on April 14, 2010, 20:33 GMT

    Ive nver really liked Yuvraj Singh, and to be honest this article just shows why. He's selfish and ignorant, has a poor attitude and has fitness issues(look at his tummy!). He will never be a successful test player. He doesnt have the basics to survive test cricket. Still, the indian selctors pick him. I dont get it. Someone like Rohit Sharma should be given a go, the future of indian cricket.

  • Vick9 on April 14, 2010, 20:31 GMT

    I agree with the article. I think that Yuvraj has become too 'spoilt' as you say it. He is the next Vinod Kambli and there is nothing you can do to change it. Let's celebrate his past, but we're better of forgetting his future. I would not want him to play for any of the teams I support, namely, Mumbai Indians and the Indian National Team. Let him play with his fancy cars and in trendy nightclubs. Cricket's done with him.

  • Ellis on April 14, 2010, 19:40 GMT

    Nobody could be a better role model for Yuvraj than his fellow Indian, Sachin Tendulkar. Tendulkar deals with the highs and lows with class. Yuvraj is a great talent behaving like a spoilt child. Let me also say that Sangakkara and Jayawardena are classy individuals too. Yuvraj has done himself no good either as a man, or a player. He is far too talented a player to give it away in a fit of pique. Time for a lot of introspection and growing up.

  • iammadhu on April 14, 2010, 19:05 GMT

    i think he did not celebrate after that win, is cuz he did not deliver in this game.. he got out.. look at dhoni.. his last few innings he did not score.. can we blame him also? or Matty hayden? i think yuvi is being unfairly targetted.. hes back from injury - he will soon get to his demolishing best

  • iammadhu on April 14, 2010, 18:55 GMT

    i think he did not celebrate after that win, is cuz he did not deliver in this game.. he got out.. look at dhoni.. his last few innings he did not score.. can we blame him also? or Matty hayden? i think yuvi is being unfairly targetted.. hes back from injury - he will soon get to his demolishing best

  • pradeep_dealwis on April 14, 2010, 18:39 GMT

    @ amitgarg78...the fact is KS is a LOT smarter and a far better cricketer than Yuvi....of course Yuvi is..or WAS ..the perfect batsman in T20 and a lot better than Kumar in that format but that doesn't make him a better captain. maybe Yvi shud have been captain solely based on the fact that he is more marketable, and after all the IPl is first a money spinner and then a cricket tournament.

  • on April 14, 2010, 18:13 GMT

    Yuvraj as test batsman has not delivered...as for one day he is still good to hold his place

  • DinakarAppaji on April 14, 2010, 18:04 GMT

    I think the article is biased and reads too much in to one incident or video clip that shows lack of emotions by Yuvraj after his team has won. It's become too easy to question the motives of a player based on one video clip. If yuvraj is really as bad as he is made out to be - the likes of Sachin, Dravid, Laxman, Sehwag and/or Dhoni would never back him to come good and would have been out of Indian team long back. All the above players quoted above take great pride in representing their country and we can rest assured they wouldn't tolerate any one player going against the good of the team. Also If you really understand the Indian psyche, mostly Indians are big introverts and are weighed down by their own high standards and/or expectations. The reality of the win in question is that it's too late to recover from one odd win for Punjab and it is already too late for this season.

  • manasvi_lingam on April 14, 2010, 17:49 GMT

    Yuvraj is not an untalented cricketer but he needs to decide, here and now: his attitude, his fitness, his form are atrocious. He will never be a good Test player. He should at least try and become the ODI player he was during 2004-07 when he hit his peak. Sadly, from being a dependable enough top order batsman in ODIs he has now become something of a bowling all rounder who occasionally plays a good knock. However, most of the younger generation possess poor attitudes: look at Kohli today. His slowing of the run rate could prove crucial in the end.

  • TrexTrainer on April 14, 2010, 17:44 GMT

    Yuvraj Singh will never be a great player purely because he does not have the necessary skills/temperament to play a 5-day game. Pure and simple

  • asad114 on April 14, 2010, 17:24 GMT

    this article is such a waste of time and space....you're writing an article based on Yuvraj Singh's expressions after his team's victory! What are you, an expert on human psychology? Reading cricinfo is becoming increasingly painful

  • turabjohnson on April 14, 2010, 16:58 GMT

    all of you don't even understand what the article is stating. It is not taking any makeup stuff from newspaper. yes there was a rumour about yuvraj not playing well but the rest can be seen from his attitude on the field. He clearly didn't like it when they took the captaincy from him and i am sure next year he won't be there . I think kings X1 punjab made a mistake when they gave the captaincy to sanga, sanga would have performed no matter what. It's just these arrogant players who think they are bigger than the game who end up doing this stuff.

  • TheUglyTruth on April 14, 2010, 16:21 GMT

    Ok guys srsly. Sachin is by far, one of my all time favourite cricketers and u can use him as a contrast to Yuvraj. Sachin is pure class and talent but more importantly, a team player whos humble in his achievements and jus an allround gentleman. Kinna like the Roger Federer of cricket. Now look at Yuvraj. He has talent, no one disputes tht and is a hero back home but can anyone deny tht hes conceited and egotistic and is a star in his own eyes. So much so that it affects his ability to be a team player, which in cricket is like trying to row a boat without any paddles. All it takes is just one player to not sync well and the entire team is a mess. Shud Sanga have gotten the captaincy? Y nt? Yuvraj did an average job in ipl 2 and sanga captains the Srilankan international team. It was worth a shot. But puttin aside credentials, does it really condone how Yuvraj acted after that victory. Everyone noticed it and it was jus plain ugly from an international cricketer of his calibre!

  • on April 14, 2010, 16:19 GMT

    Well said, he better start delivering now

  • proteasfan99 on April 14, 2010, 15:15 GMT

    i think this artical is rubbish...why is it that India hype up their own players but cannot believe in them...i come from zim where we never rubbish our banch of so called untalented cricketers...Yuvraj is good thats it...you cannot look further than that...no one can be tendulkar, no one can be sehwag or dravid or laxman or gavaskar or dev...so lose it and stop saying rubbish about your own players...rather back them...

  • amitgarg78 on April 14, 2010, 15:08 GMT

    Rob, While some of the criticism of his behavior is indeed well deserved, most of your observations are not quite based on facts - & you are just as guilty of trying to focus attention on the hearsay through text in bold / upper cases! Since when has a report in a newspaper become basis of a character assassination? Sensationalism not Journalism! In any game of limited overs cricket team (ODI or T20), his abilities will find him a place.If anything, he has a reason to be peeved at the promotion of KS as his skipper in his franchise. As great as he is, KS has an inferior record to Yuvraj in ODIs and most certainly over the last 3-4 years. In this period, Yuvaj averages 40, KS averages 36. Yuvi has scored more runs & at better strike rate than KS.Given his record, I do not think KS is an automatic selection in an ODI squad, let alone a T20 team. I agree about his behavior but references to the brand Yuvraj or to the movie are way below the belt and don't do him or you, any good.

  • SudAPhathey on April 14, 2010, 15:05 GMT

    wow, brilliant, if only he could read this

  • IPL_is_Thrash on April 14, 2010, 15:00 GMT

    The problem with Yuvraj is - He is not fit enough to handle success. Sachin Tendulkar has earned more success than anyone could dare to imagine in any era. But his hunger still remains fresh. Whereas Yuvraj is completely out of sorts when it comes to handling success. He is not very consistent on bouncy, seaming as well as turning tracks. He should accept is shortcomings and thrive towards excellence.

  • Vikramaditya100 on April 14, 2010, 14:55 GMT

    Yuvraj is a fantastic ODI and T20 player. He would walk into any XI, I reckon. But his test career so far is a mystery (even to him I suppose). His 1st 100 against Pakistan, on greentop, against an attack of the calibre of Akhtar, Sami, Gul etc. was a brilliant one, then his second one was also against a similar attack (Asif instead of Gul) and 3rd one on an up ans down pitch against a similar attack. What happens to him against other attacks(weaker ones) on far more friendlier surfaces, I don't know. It is soemthing he needs to work on. Maybe he is too anxious. His one day form has been very good. He has just come from an injury so i think he will be back to form soon.

  • cellguru89 on April 14, 2010, 14:55 GMT

    Hold on guys... he is a king n he will b back in real king style... just wait n watch... im happy tht he is being critizied now since he deserve it. but dont write him off..

  • Philip_Gnana on April 14, 2010, 14:48 GMT

    I tend to share your thoughts and do agree with your comments. Perhaps, the fact that he has been a disappointment was what caused him not to be jubilant - "How can I celebrate when I have not made a contribution, I have let the side down". Brett Lee for that matter was just the opposite. Had been virtually hit out of the ground was all smiles and relieved that the TEAM won. Yuvy has always been that solitary person. I recall the IPL 01, when he had just played a super innings, Preity full of joy came running to greet and congratulate him, Yuvy just brushed past her owner and carried on to the dressing room regardless. Sanga had played a fine innings too, and Preity went on to give him a kiss. This just sticks out in my mind....Yuvy needs to accept that you are part of the team win or lose - sooner than later Philip Gnana, New Malden, Surrey

  • KTiwari on April 14, 2010, 14:42 GMT

    Good and fair article. Yuvi is clearly not happy thought he is trying to be politically correct by giving statements of support. I think there is bigger issue here when franchises are appointing captain, my guess is that Indian star players don't like a foreign captain. Deccan and Rajasthan has foreign captains by they don't have any big Indian star player.

  • pradygill on April 14, 2010, 14:36 GMT

    I am not a big fan of Yuvi even though I have played cricket with his father. He is extremely talented as cricketer but outside of that he does not handle things maturely. But I'll say one thing that he should not have been stripped of his captaincy of the Kings even though there were some issues during IPL2. What happened with Saurov in KKR management, he retained the captaincy and see how his performance currently. I think Punjab XI would definitely have benefited from him being the captain.

  • Sach_is_Life on April 14, 2010, 14:16 GMT

    About this article ..It seems like he dont know who is Yuvraj before that T20 game..So..I dont wanna talk anything abt his article..For me its just like another sensational article ..For me there is nothing wrong in not showing your emotions when you've already won and I'm sure all the great players did the same on most occasions and thats not new .. and this is no way related to what McDonald did ..So,stop reading too much into player's mind ..

  • seshu06 on April 14, 2010, 14:09 GMT

    What the heck...wonder how easily people can pass comments on a player just based on few bad performances(that too in a meaningless money driven league)......i bet he won more matches for India than any other player from his debut....come on give him some respite...he already has a list of injuries to fight with!!!!!

  • knowledge_eater on April 14, 2010, 14:05 GMT

    Freddy sledged him in t20 wc., Brodi had to pay price. Rob Steen just stalked Yuvi-the brand, lets see now who is going to pay price. Getting "Eye-Balls" - (Yuvi's word), from someones bad patch and marketing ICC's coming tournament, wow Mr. Steen. I hope Mr. Steen sleeps well at night, if he does, he is definitely great candidate for next election. If he can't, he definitely cares about Yuvi. Now, let's assume Yuvi does well, in ICC tournament, then Rob Steen will win. What happens if he doesn't perform and get drop then Rob Steen will win, and Brodi will thank Mr.Steen, thank you for taking my revenge. Hahaha teach me how to do profit from someones bad patch. Or is it really bad patch !! Is it too early ?

  • Sach_is_Life on April 14, 2010, 13:57 GMT

    When i read all the comments here,i can find the similarity between the comments about SRT in 2007 after the debacle of WC as if he was the only culprit in the team and he has to retire..blah blah blah..Obviously this again proves that People has Short Term Memory and they dont care abt players and their feelings and at the time everybody is saying that Yuvi is Our Match Winner and SRT is a spent force ..and now that Yuvi was down everybody is jumping on him..Ridiculous..he is coming from injury and it'll take some time to find his timing and definitely in T20 you don't have that much of time to spend some time in the middle and find your form..So..Just wait for some time..Yuvi is our one of the best ODI player Till now and he'll be in the future too..Before he was injured he was in 2nd rank in ICC Odi ratings..I dont know whats wrong with you people ..instead of supporting a player when he was down..you guys are trying to drag hmi down furthermore...Just like our Sensational media..:x

  • cric-kaka on April 14, 2010, 13:37 GMT

    I hope Yuvi doesn't bring this attitude to India dressing room. He was disgruntled when he didn't get India captainship or vice captainship a few years ago. His big ego will bring him down sooner than later. I am sure he is worthy of playing in Indian XI after his IPL performance. Suresh Raina, Rohit Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja are better player and team members.

  • robheinen on April 14, 2010, 13:30 GMT

    Without doubt a technically talented player, mentally however he needs to.....well, it's simple.....grow up. He regularly acts like my five year old son when we walk past the toy store.

  • 9ST9 on April 14, 2010, 13:16 GMT

    @AshishTandon - it is not only this incident, anyone with a bit of sense can see that yuvaraj just sulks most of the time he is out there - be it batting or fielding. The problem with Indians like you are that you guys just worship players irrelevant of what they do. Youvaraj is acting like a spoilt little brat and really these kind of people should have no place in a professional team. But of course having said that it is Indian money that is spent on fattening white elephants like him, so who cares?

  • Tonialpha27 on April 14, 2010, 13:07 GMT

    There is no doubt that Yuvraj Singh is one of the most talented Indian players. Having said that , he is also the least humble. He should learn a lesson or two about humility from Sachin , Dravid, Kumble and Dhoni. If he can set his attitude aside and concentrate on his cricket , he can do wonders more than any other batsman.

    In his book, John Buchanan had mentioned "Yuvraj would just walk off after training, leaving all his gears and rubbish because he was used to someone else picking up after him" . That just sums up Yuvraj's attitude !!

  • Baundele on April 14, 2010, 12:49 GMT

    The article does not make any sense. Yuvraj has been good enough at the international level and it is insane to critise him so heavily because of his not-so-good performances in this year's IPL. If you consider T20, I do not remember any other player having better stats than UV's 37 avg at 165%. In the IPL he is just returning from injury and has failed to convert his starts into big numbers. And you have just taken the chance to write him off! It's a matter of one mouth-shutting big innings.

  • Pramod75 on April 14, 2010, 12:43 GMT

    Analogy could be true. If you look around, apart from Dhoni who is regarded as captain cool, in current lot, there is Chris Gayle who does not react even when he does or his team does well. You have Shewag who reacts as if century is not an achievement at all. If one remembers Sir Richards, how he walked to the crease, you would be forgiven to think he was walking in his backyard to face a kid bowling at him. Ever looked at Bish Bedi reacting after taking wickets. In all probability you would have seen him rolling his sleeves and walking back to his bowling mark without even looking at his team mates. Having said that Yuvraj has been an expressive player than what we saw in that game. Does this mean he became a matured player or disgruntled player will only be known once he plays for India. Afterall, this situation is not new to him. He was once hot fav to become captain of India for 1st T20 WC when Dhoni was given the charge.

  • on April 14, 2010, 12:20 GMT

    I can neither agree nor disagree with what Rob Steen says. For the talent Yuvraj has always possessed, he could have been in a different planet altogether, had he possessed a bit of dedication and commitment. Having said that, he has achieved quite a lot, and has been a major factor in India's evolution into the world's strongest side.

  • zvina on April 14, 2010, 12:15 GMT

    Yuvi was always like this..the owners of the club should know about their players and how to handle them. Not all individuals are alike. Unfortunately we judge people based on our expectation and found them wanting and then blame them! The least we can do is to leave them alone, all he needs is some space as Gambhir pointed out - so chill guys he will be alright!

  • bappabadmash on April 14, 2010, 12:14 GMT

    Yuvraaj has the capabilities.He will play well. Every cricketer pass thru' a difficult time.We havenot heard his version.He has given us result not cricket gossip writers like your goodself. During 1983-84 West Indies tour of India such cricket gossip did come when we were not in a good shape.He is having his time to show his skills.

  • on April 14, 2010, 12:03 GMT

    He goes into that list of those who always under perform only to expectations of people, but I never doubted his loyalty he is just lacking the motivation to play I guess.Kings XI are nowhere near to semis and he is not a captain too, Guess what would have happened if he was in one of those teams which are tied for semis I bet then everybody would seen the Yuvi we all know but he is no good position now and captaincy was always his dream which is snatched from him. Now for whom do u guess he will play?? Nobody, not even for the crowd because he has no reason to stay in that team money hardly bothers him I guess thats why he shows no emotions!!

  • mrxxx on April 14, 2010, 11:50 GMT

    good aricle Steen....ya,he's talented bt the temperment is not the best..

  • on April 14, 2010, 11:48 GMT

    Cut the guy some slack, he is looking unfit and going through a bad patch. He is a supreme talent.

  • Matricfail on April 14, 2010, 11:38 GMT

    Well analyzed Mr R. S. I am huge fan of Yuvi when he is on top of his game but when he is out of sorts I become a frustrating person who does't quite understand what in the world is wrong with him.

    All I know is that this guy is grumpy and he plays the ball with his god gifted talent not hard work. May he have a better career ahead of him otherwise loads of youngsters are already knocking the door of Selection Committee.

  • whizz_bang on April 14, 2010, 11:34 GMT

    I am not all surprised by this article in reference to Yuvraj Singh. His body language said it all from the very first game in the present IPL Season. If I was Ness Wadia, I would have read the 'Riot Act' to him and would have told him "to shape up or ship out". I think the BCCI should do the "Ganguli" on him for the forthcoming World T20 Cup, perhaps then, he'll come back a better man and player.

  • letchford on April 14, 2010, 11:13 GMT

    Good article, Pity the Indian selecters have picked him on reputation & not on form. Currently in the IPL there would be at least 10 players on for who should be going to the West Indies..... It is a bit like Mike Hussey going on reputation & not on form. If he gets a game and India fails and the Yuvi fails to fire, it will make interesting reading in the Indian newspapers...

  • on April 14, 2010, 10:59 GMT

    Bullshit article.. Agree with AshishTandon .. even Dhoni was calm after the 20-20 WC finals. i thought it was an extra-ordinary gesture when everyone was jumping around. Maybe Yuvi is plain relieved that his side won after so many games. Maybe he was tired after reading articles such as urs.. coming to a conclusion just on one gesture. Im not a Yuvi fan, its just i adore him and i think he deserves more. He has been India's best ODI batsman for a long time. He just came off an injury. Even the likes of Sachin and Brett Lee suffer coming out of an injury. So don't go on propagating lies. Well if u wanna know whether Yuvi is a team player - go check out the twitter photo where he is enjoying Brett Lee's guitar playing.

  • Kart_in_Quartz on April 14, 2010, 10:05 GMT

    All it would take now is an effortless blitzkrieg from this "brand", a luscious World T20 opener in store v Afghanistan, where one would now witness either an 8 sixes in an over (includes 2 no-balled ones with free hits) or the fastest 100 to add to his kitty of fastest 50 in this format of the game. And then EVERYTHING WOULD BE FORGOTTEN! Past is past, let bygones be bygones... One would even hear a stray comment as "Oh! That was only a KXIP, Just a Sanga under fire"… Well… An encore of what one witnessed that of an "injured" Sehwag, who decided to "choose" his games in the last World T20, to only follow up later with a near triple hundred and a few more fiery knocks. Does anyone even recap that controversial former incident now?... That's this country for you. It's only a matter of getting initially established and later "play" around... Alls then well and truly forgotten as the "brands" get umpteen opportunities to become larger-than-life deities time and again!

  • Psyc_s on April 14, 2010, 9:29 GMT

    Good Article Mr.Steen...Yuvraj always wanted public attention whether it is on field or off field. He is a spoiled kid. Not to take anything away about his talent, he is a wonderful player.He had just forgotten what to put first, having so many things on his plate like cricket, money, girls etc etc...It is obvious that cricket had brought him all this glory, money and star value so Yuvraj have to respect the game to sustain his sucess in cricket...All the best Yuvi...

  • alokchatto on April 14, 2010, 9:20 GMT

    It is a shame on the part of Indian journalists not to bring this to the attention of their readers. My wife and I saw what Mr. Steen had seen and were really shocked at someone's such a huge attitude issue. Greg Chappell had mentioned that 'He thinks he is a Start- but he has to work much more harder to be one' ! Thank you Mr. Steen. We also get to see another 'attitude' in Ganguly - the way he ridiculed his own players.

  • AshishTandon on April 14, 2010, 9:11 GMT

    I think that this article is absolutely rubbish. There have been several incidents where players have not displaed over the top emotions after taking a wicket or getting to a century. It seems for them as business-as-usual to have taken a splendid catch or effect a near to impossible run out. Why is it that when India registers a win and Dhoni doesnt vent his emotions and rather walks around as if it is nothing big then he is called Captain Cool and Yuvraj is getting the stick for his not showing on-field emotions on a win. Does the writer wants to suggest that the players should actually put up a show of their emotions and make it all look even more like a circus rather than a serious game being followed by millions?

  • G_Arun on April 14, 2010, 9:09 GMT

    Its time to stop dwelling on this topic . Yuvraj could have made something of his talent . He did not and the fact that he still retains cult status is one of those mysteries of life that do not merit discussion. We should forget him - 20 years from now , anyway , I doubt if one will dedicate even a line on him when writing about Indian cricket .

  • Gupta.Ankur on April 14, 2010, 8:47 GMT

    Yuvraaj probably the most talented player from india since Tendulkar has failed to deliver time and again.......

    Greg chappell rightly pointed out few years back,that with Yuvraj's talent he should have become India's best batsman with close to 10yrs in Intl. cricket.....

    All we get is a good inngs every 2-30 match even in Odi's..........I was highly amused when in 2008 a leading newspaper called him heir to Tendulkar's throne.......

    But alas he is not even good to be a Yuvraj leave alone being a Emperor.........

  • indersayee on April 14, 2010, 6:10 GMT

    The Kings XI Punjab did a great mistake my taking the captaincy from Yuvi.... He took them to the Semi's of IPL 2008 & got them almost to the Semi's in 2009 season only to miss by Net-run rate... It was a bad thing to snatch Yuvi off his captaincy which he was doing well... Kings XI management should have carefully considered their opinion as it had affect the moral of their team... Its not fair to criticize Yuvi for not performing as he didn't get the recognition he should have got.

  • vibh_ch on April 14, 2010, 5:50 GMT

    I appreciate your effort to bring to fore the achievements of Yuvraj.It has been over a decade since he first made his intl appearance straight from a victorious under19 WC campaign.Talent is obvious.His form so far,even in ODIs has been sporadic.Having watched game quite closely for some time,I believe that a big player for the future will show signs of what is to come from him or be expected of him,early in his career.Yuvraj has shown he is a great six hitter and when in mood can demolish any attack.As Indians,we can hardly see him being a great test player for us in the future.He is gaining weight by the day.As far as fielding goes,he is a shadow of his ownformer self.We are seeing younger players than him from whom we can expect something special in the future and I,for one,am very keen to see them play for India.If this can teach him a lesson,though I doubt whether he has the humility to learn one,he would do well for himself.Unfortunately,looks matter to our people.

  • cric4india on April 14, 2010, 5:30 GMT

    Rob has given a good finishing touch with the statement indicating which brand of cricket is the true identity of the "cricketer" in a person. Also, I see eye to eye with him in the aspect of Yuvraj not living to the cult status he has earned. But it gives no understandable reason to pinpoint every lack of celebration he showcases. The fact that it was not an international game must all the more and only work in his favor here. Punjab are in a situation in the league where even a win seems a consolation. He might genuinely not have seen any reason to beat the drum. Morover, he never asked anyone else to stop nor did he spoil the party. It is being blown hugely out of proportion. I honestly do not see any selfish motive in his reaction.

  • Skywalker1977 on April 14, 2010, 5:26 GMT

    Well, that has always been his trait, being immensely gifted has been his only savior. While he's tamed his temperament to quite an extent, he's still got a long long way to go before he can become a 5 day 'champion'.

  • barterback on April 14, 2010, 5:26 GMT

    Finally, an exquisite and scrupulous assessment of Yuvraj, the cricketer every Indian fan admired for so long. I think Scorsese will make another Raging Bull, only this time the ring will be a cricket field and protagonist will be Yuvraj. A movie showing the ascend of an unknown 19-year old from Punjab taking on Aussies in 2000 Nairobi, elevating his game to become 1 of 2 genuine ODI match-winners India ever produced (No, its not the one for whom I stay up all night not to miss his assault. He is on top of my list of India's test match-winners along with of course The Master. Its Dhoni - the humble and fearless fighter who continues to awe with his completely unpredictable yet winning knocks), and then blind himself in the lights of unprecedented fame and money, become completely desultory, gain extra 20 pounds, and start loosing his spot from national team to "mohalla" teams like IPL. Search your soul Yuvi, change Scorsese script to have a happy bollywood style ending!

  • sweetspot on April 14, 2010, 5:17 GMT

    A film called "The Magic Bat" has already been made! Funny Yuvraj has been sold a concept that is already old and done. As for his talent, however, he needs a settled team atmosphere, something that the Kings XI don't seem to have at the moment. He is capable of monstrously heroic deeds and will be a huge asset when the Indian team starts its functions shortly after the IPL. It takes Dhoni to get the best out of Yuvi and make him every bit his heady image suggests he should be!

  • AB99 on April 14, 2010, 5:14 GMT

    Yuvraj has always been his own person and has had mood swings ... remember the 2007-2008 series in Australia where his personal life took precedence over his cricketing life ... he is not a test class player and Indian cricket would be better off without him ...

  • VipulPatki on April 14, 2010, 5:01 GMT

    Rob, for all you know Yuvi might be a team player. In fact, he already sees himself as a Mumbai Indian player and hence the thought of 'his' team getting defeated made him sulk!

  • springonion on April 14, 2010, 4:58 GMT

    Good read. Yuvraj is an over rated, flat-track bully and you've hit the nail on the head here.

  • Sameer_Ponnada on April 14, 2010, 4:53 GMT

    One of the best articles in cricinfo. Good job Rob. This applies to not just Yuvraj but a lot of other Indian cricketers, who have been making a living on "brand name" and not heroics on the field. With advertising capaitalizing on the success of cricketers, they are living in a dream woven by their "facilitators" and not reality. I dont know if a million children across the world aspire to be a yuvraj, but I know that a far greater number aspire to be a Sachin one day. The reason is simple, humility. Sachin is admired more as a wonderful person than as a brand name.

  • del_ on April 14, 2010, 4:45 GMT

    No suprise there, never considered him much of a cricketer - the way people went on about him after he hit six sixes was ridiculous. A good eye, the ability to swing the bat and a bit of luck like that doesn't make you a good player. I liken him to Warner - all they will ever be is a slapper in T20 and never have the skills to play in the longer formats.

  • on April 14, 2010, 4:40 GMT

    Great article. Last line says it all.. I never saw such a somber and uninterested Yuvi in indian colors. May he feel his comfort in Indian Colors. Cant wait till this IPL circus gets over...

  • on April 14, 2010, 4:27 GMT

    Yeah, absolutely Rob, international cricket is by far 'the best brand in town'. In India, every young cricketer's first aspiration should aspire to play for the national cricket team and not the Kings XI Punjab, the Kolkata Knight Riders or the Chennai Super Kings. I'd like to add that Yuvraj has always been 'a sulken teenager'. It's just his nature. Also, regardless of his immense talent, he can't be a premier test batsman because of his weakness against quality slow bowling and his tendency to nick outside the off stump. If he works hard (not something Yuvraj is probably used to) then it may be possible. The unfortunate thing is guys like Rohit Sharma, M. Vijay, and Suresh Raina have the talent and aren't as lazy (I think).

  • rohan024 on April 14, 2010, 4:23 GMT

    I think everyone is being a bit unfair on Yuvraj Singh. He still has it in him and hopefully he will answer all his critics by stunning performances in T20 WC. He's sulking, that's true and understandable but don't think hes under performing. Ness Wadia decided to remove Yuvraj from captaincy when Punjab was the only team to reach semifinals in both editions of IPL. The problem here is Preity Zinta, who's a big big distraction. I hope she remains out of the dugouts for a while.

  • v_singh on April 14, 2010, 4:21 GMT

    Yuvraj is the most "over hyped" player in the Indian team !! Whenever he gets out , his expressions are as IF he received an unplayable ball - when actually he gets bowled with a simple delivery !! Punjab did a good job in sacking him as Captain needs to lead by example. Yuvraj is NOT consistent enough. I am not sure how he can he be a brand !! I do not recall any if he has done anything special other than on his debut against AUS in SA and hitting 6 sixes in an over !! He has been in Indian cricket for 10 years now and has not been able to play (not selected) test cricket on a regular basis.

  • coolk123 on April 14, 2010, 4:10 GMT

    So true !!! This also makes us to retrospect some of the run outs that we have seen in this IPL. Much better attempt could have been made on many ocassions !!!

  • peeeeet on April 14, 2010, 3:44 GMT

    I just don't understand the fuss with Yuvraj. He's just an average player that has the ability to belt a cricket ball really far. Afrdi averages better than him in tests.

  • abdulqader on April 14, 2010, 3:34 GMT

    Brilliant article again . Well said .

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  • abdulqader on April 14, 2010, 3:34 GMT

    Brilliant article again . Well said .

  • peeeeet on April 14, 2010, 3:44 GMT

    I just don't understand the fuss with Yuvraj. He's just an average player that has the ability to belt a cricket ball really far. Afrdi averages better than him in tests.

  • coolk123 on April 14, 2010, 4:10 GMT

    So true !!! This also makes us to retrospect some of the run outs that we have seen in this IPL. Much better attempt could have been made on many ocassions !!!

  • v_singh on April 14, 2010, 4:21 GMT

    Yuvraj is the most "over hyped" player in the Indian team !! Whenever he gets out , his expressions are as IF he received an unplayable ball - when actually he gets bowled with a simple delivery !! Punjab did a good job in sacking him as Captain needs to lead by example. Yuvraj is NOT consistent enough. I am not sure how he can he be a brand !! I do not recall any if he has done anything special other than on his debut against AUS in SA and hitting 6 sixes in an over !! He has been in Indian cricket for 10 years now and has not been able to play (not selected) test cricket on a regular basis.

  • rohan024 on April 14, 2010, 4:23 GMT

    I think everyone is being a bit unfair on Yuvraj Singh. He still has it in him and hopefully he will answer all his critics by stunning performances in T20 WC. He's sulking, that's true and understandable but don't think hes under performing. Ness Wadia decided to remove Yuvraj from captaincy when Punjab was the only team to reach semifinals in both editions of IPL. The problem here is Preity Zinta, who's a big big distraction. I hope she remains out of the dugouts for a while.

  • on April 14, 2010, 4:27 GMT

    Yeah, absolutely Rob, international cricket is by far 'the best brand in town'. In India, every young cricketer's first aspiration should aspire to play for the national cricket team and not the Kings XI Punjab, the Kolkata Knight Riders or the Chennai Super Kings. I'd like to add that Yuvraj has always been 'a sulken teenager'. It's just his nature. Also, regardless of his immense talent, he can't be a premier test batsman because of his weakness against quality slow bowling and his tendency to nick outside the off stump. If he works hard (not something Yuvraj is probably used to) then it may be possible. The unfortunate thing is guys like Rohit Sharma, M. Vijay, and Suresh Raina have the talent and aren't as lazy (I think).

  • on April 14, 2010, 4:40 GMT

    Great article. Last line says it all.. I never saw such a somber and uninterested Yuvi in indian colors. May he feel his comfort in Indian Colors. Cant wait till this IPL circus gets over...

  • del_ on April 14, 2010, 4:45 GMT

    No suprise there, never considered him much of a cricketer - the way people went on about him after he hit six sixes was ridiculous. A good eye, the ability to swing the bat and a bit of luck like that doesn't make you a good player. I liken him to Warner - all they will ever be is a slapper in T20 and never have the skills to play in the longer formats.

  • Sameer_Ponnada on April 14, 2010, 4:53 GMT

    One of the best articles in cricinfo. Good job Rob. This applies to not just Yuvraj but a lot of other Indian cricketers, who have been making a living on "brand name" and not heroics on the field. With advertising capaitalizing on the success of cricketers, they are living in a dream woven by their "facilitators" and not reality. I dont know if a million children across the world aspire to be a yuvraj, but I know that a far greater number aspire to be a Sachin one day. The reason is simple, humility. Sachin is admired more as a wonderful person than as a brand name.

  • springonion on April 14, 2010, 4:58 GMT

    Good read. Yuvraj is an over rated, flat-track bully and you've hit the nail on the head here.