was awarded for his impressive performances in the ongoing Vijay Hazare Trophy 2015-16 © Getty Images
Yuvraj Singh was awarded for his impressive performance in the ongoing Vijay Hazare Trophy 2015-16 © Getty Images

Yuvraj Singh, who last played for India in the fateful final of ICC World T20 2014, was awarded for his impressive performances in the ongoing Vijay Hazare Trophy 2015-16 with a recall to India’s T20I squad for the tour to Australia. Along with fellow seasoned warhorse Ashish Nehra, Yuvraj will have the ideal opportunity to show that he still has what it takes to win games for India. The duo are clearly in contention for India’s ICC World T20 2016 squad, and if they are able to perform well in Australia it would all but guarantee them of World Cup slots. READ: Yuvraj Singh included in India’s T20I squad for Australia tour 2015-16

The tale of Yuvraj is a Bollywood film waiting to happen. In all probability it will come to pass one day. From being the hero of India’s successful ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 campaign to being a cancer survivor to being the villain of India’s defeat against Sri Lanka in the ICC World T20 2014 final, Yuvraj has seen remarkable ups and downs. His disappointing performance in the final made him the target (quite literally, in the case of some vandals) of immense ire after India lost, and it seemed for a while that Yuvraj’s career was finished.

However, Yuvraj has proven time and again that there is simply no writing him off. He performed wonderfully for Royal Challenges Bangalore (RCB) during Indian Premier League (IPL) 2014 that immediately followed the World T20. He nearly took RCB to the playoffs single-handedly in the process. He was in prime form just before India’s squad for ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 was selected, and was briefly the leading run-scorer of the Ranji Trophy season. Sadly for him, he missed out on being selected for the tournament.

Yuvraj has continued to shine for Punjab, first in the ongoing Ranji Trophy 2015-16 season, and now in the Vijay Hazare Trophy 2015-16 as well. He has played like the Yuvraj of old, getting quick and vital runs for Punjab. If Yuvraj manages to find his form for India as well, he could be a massive asset in familiar conditions during the ICC World T20 2016. Vijay Hazare Trophy 2015-16: Yuvraj Singh excels as Punjab thrash Rajasthan

What sets Yuvraj apart from the rest is his ability to hit sixes almost at will. These days the surge of T20 cricket worldwide has given rise to a number of batsmen who can score quickly, but Yuvraj manages to do it more consistently than most. Another vital aspect of Yuvraj’s style of play is that he can start playing his shots from the first ball. India’s T20I team has lacked a batsman in the middle order who can provide a late surge, and Yuvraj could be the answer for this. With Suresh Raina out of form and MS Dhoni not playing as many shots these days, Yuvraj could play the role of finisher.

Though it may not be needed much, Yuvraj’s bowling must not be forgotten either. His handy part-time left-arm spin is capable of picking up wickets, as he proved time and again during ICC Cricket World Cup 2011.

A fit and in-form Yuvraj is the stuff captain’s dreams are made of. He is the complete package when it comes to T20 cricket: powerful batsman, useful bowler and also a reliable fielder. The tour of Australia will provide Yuvraj with the perfect platform to announce to the world that he is not yet past his prime. India will hope he can deliver.

(Shiamak Unwalla, a reporter with CricketCountry, is a self-confessed Sci-Fi geek who loves cricket more than cricketers. His Twitter handle is @ShiamakUnwalla)