Yuvraj Singh has played a big role in last three wins for India © AFP
Yuvraj Singh has played a big role in last three wins for India © AFP

After a quiet tour of Australia and a forgettable series against Sri Lanka at home, Yuvraj Singh has once again emerged as a giant in T20 cricket, sounding an alarm for all who are gearing up for the ICC World T20 2016. Yuvraj, who has the knack of taking wickets on regular basis, had been struggling with the bat. But if the recent performances are anything to go by, Yuvraj is reinventing himself as a batsman who is playing an extremely crucial role in the Indian middle-order. In the ongoing Asia Cup 2016, Yuvraj has played as many as three innings of significance that could mark the beginning of something really special. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: India vs UAE, Match 9 at Dhaka

Yuvraj looked a spent force when India were playing a last major T20 tournament, about two years ago in Bangladesh. In the final of the ICC World T20 2014 against Sri Lanka, Yuvraj’s struggles were evident as India failed to put up a strong total, and were eventually beaten. The star Indian all-rounder copped a major chunk of blame for India’s loss, and looked like he may never return to international cricket.

Yuvraj remained on and off the Indian side, but as the tour of Australia approached, the selectors decided to give him another chance. He did not do much with the bat — there were others hogging all the limelight — and hung around with few crucial wickets that kept everyone interested. The series win in Australia and against Sri Lanka at home covered up the lack of runs from Yuvraj, and came the Asia Cup 2016 — another opportunity for him to prove himself. ALSO READ: Yuvraj Singh vs Sri Lanka at Dhaka: From ICC World T20 2014 to Asia Cup 2016, life has come a full circle

India were always the favourite, but Bangladesh surprised everyone with a green-top wicket. Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli fell for cheap, and with India reeling at 42 for 3, India needed stability. Rohit Sharma was doing the scoring, and the need was for someone to provide support. Yuvraj was in at No. 5, and his 55-run stand with Rohit proved a match-winning partnership for India. Yuvraj did not do the bulk of scoring, he contributed 15 off 16 and Rohit got 39. What mattered was the support that he provided.

Yuvraj’s moxie was on show once again versus Pakistan, when he teamed up with Kohli to steer India towards a victory. The road wasn’t easy; India were tottering at 8 for 3, Pakistani bowlers were throwing everything that they had in their kitty, and Yuvraj had begun on a precarious note. But Yuvraj survived; he did not edge any and left alone the ones that looked troubling. Alongside him was the resolute Kohli, who picked up the scoring rate when pressure eased off. Yuvraj remained unbeaten on 14 off 32 balls, striking only two boundaries. But the time that he spent on the wicket was extremely crucial, and so was his approach to keep the danger away.

If these two innings showcased Yuvraj’s strategy of spending time at the wicket, he decided to bang-bang against Sri Lanka. He struck three sixes and as many boundaries, scoring an 18-ball 35 that signalled that it is not the same Yuvraj who would drop the anchor and let other batsmen do the talking.

In past three innings, Yuvraj has shown he can be a rock in the Indian middle-order as well as someone who can get quick runs in T20 format. After MS Dhoni, Yuvraj is another Indian batsman who is reinventing himself, according to the team’s needs.

(Devarchit Varma is senior writer with CricketCountry. He can be followed on Twitter @Devarchit)