Recovering Yuvraj Makes India ICC WT20 Favourites

Recovering Yuvraj Makes India ICC WT20 Favourites
Recovering Yuvraj Makes India ICC WT20 Favourites
©REUTERS / Action Images

Indian batsman Yuvraj Singh has targeted the ICC World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka in September as a possible comeback following his recovery from cancer.

Yuvraj was diagnosed with lung cancer after he helped India win the 2011 World Cup but after undergoing chemotherapy in America, is slowly making a return to full fitness.

Speaking to ICC Cricket 360°™, he talked about his illness, how he has coped with it and his hopes for the future.

"Initially it was hard to accept that a guy like me who is training six to seven hours a day, running around all the time as an athlete, can get diagnosed with something like this," he said.

"It took a long time to sink in but eventually I made peace with it. I knew I have an issue and I have to sort it out.

"The support was overwhelming, especially from India. One of the students from a college in Indianapolis came to see me and I felt like I was in India. I just want to thank everybody for their support and for their care. I went through chemotherapy which is hard for everybody but the wishes and the love is what made me come back," he added.

He has now started light training with a view to returning to playing cricket in the near future.

"I’m feeling good. It’s been two months since I finished my chemotherapy. Initially my energy levels were low but now I am following my diet and eating loads of food and it’s getting better in recovery. I’ve done six or seven sessions very light training and very light yoga. I’m just getting back into the groove of being a normal person, breathe normally, which is a lot of excitement and fun for me at the moment."

Yuvraj, who is one of India's most powerful batsman, has played 37 Tests, 271 One-Day Internationals and 23 Twenty20 Internationals for his country and is the only man to have scored six sixes in a Twenty20 over, achieving the feat against Stuart Broad in the 2007 event - which India went on to win.

Disappointing showings followed for India in 2009 and 2010 but he is hopeful of two things ahead of the 2012 event - that he will be fit enough to play, and that India will run out winners.

"I don’t want to rush and I don’t want to come back at 75% fitness. I might take six months, I might take two months. So I don’t know. But the day I feel 100% I surely will be back," he said.

“Playing for India is going to be a huge challenge for me because the body has been under a lot of shock which nobody can understand except me. Only a cancer patient can understand what he is going through. So it’s going to be a big challenge for me to come back and play for India again."

"I think (the) favourites are India because we’ve got the biggest hitters - biggest hitters in town that’s what I want to say. Hopefully I should be back by then. I’m not saying I’m the reason, it’s just that I feel we have the strongest side and if we can sort out our bowling out in T20 I’m sure we can be a strong unit. There are other strong teams like Australia, South Africa which always compete at the top level at world events."

© Cricket World 2012

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