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Imp is to win games than being strong on paper

Bangalore: Senior middle-order batsman Yuvraj Singh feels that it won`t matter how strong the team is on paper if they don`t win matches. The southpaw also refused to draw comparisons with the 1983 World Cup winning side.

"Irrespective of everything, our team has been winning matches and that is very important. The 1983 team was a successful team and if we have to prove that we are a good team then we have to win matches. It doesn`t matter how strong the team is on paper. More important is to win games," Yuvraj said during an open media session here on Friday.

Asked about his responsibility in the side, 29-year-old said,"The key is to bat well in the middle overs and assess the situation. What situation are we in, whether we need to consolidate or we need to build partnerships. It is just what I have been trying to do in the last couple of years."

The memories of the disastrous 2007 World Cup campaign is still fresh in the minds and Yuvraj feels that a good start will definitely set the ball rolling in the right direction.

"We have definitely thought about the 2007 World Cup in West Indies and the reasons for not qualifying. It`s past now and we have made a new beginning. In the last World Cup, we didn?t have momentum going. So, this time around it is very important to get the momentum. We have to prepare well and see how we start the tournament," he said.

The dashing batsman said that they have prepared well for the tournament.

"We are preparing very well and are charged up and raring to go in the first game (against Bangladesh). We have a lot of experience in our bowling and batting department. If we can field well consistently, it will definitely help us in the World Cup," he added.

The batsman however didn`t wish to comment on the format that even Tournament Director Ratnakar Shetty has admitted to have been tweaked to favour India`s qualification in the knock-out.

"I am ok with the format. I have no issues. My job is to play whatever the format is."

The approach towards batting Powerplay, which is an important aspect in ODIs should also be looked at very carefully, feels the veteran of 265 ODIs.

 It can work to your advantage at times and create a disadvantage on other situations. It`s going to be crucial at what time you take the Powerplay. Normally, you take a powerplay when two batsmen are set or if you don`t have a choice you take it in the 45th over," he said.

With the tournament being hosted in the sub-continent, slow bowlers are expected to play a big role in the tournament but Yuvraj said even though he frequently rolls his arm over for India now-a-days he is not a specialist bowler.

"I don`t think I am a specialist bowler. I just enjoy my bowling whenever I am handed over the ball. The day I start thinking I am a specialist bowler, I am going to get hit more.

"I don`t back myself as a bowler. From the last 50 odd ODIs, I have been bowling more because we don?t have a specialist left-arm spinner in the team. So my job is to chip in with 7 to 8 overs," he said.

He was also of the view that with the advent of Twenty20 cricket, no score is safe these days.

"The game has really changed for the last 10 years. Early on 240, 250 were winning score buteven 320-330 is not safe.

The thinking has also changed with the advent of Twenty20," Yuvraj viewed.

Yuvraj reiterated that he almost thought of quitting last year when he was dropped from both the Test and ODI teams but never ever said he wanted to leave cricket.

"I never said I want to leave the game. I said I used to get thoughts should I retire because I used to get injured all the time. It was very tough for me to get back on the field and get injured again. It was a tough phase which I have overcome. Definitely my body is feeling better now," he said.

"As a young kid, when you start playing for India you start enjoying. There is also lot of responsibility on you.

Getting injured all the time wasn`t happy on the mind and body. So, I think it was the toughest year of my 10 years on career because there were times when I was doing nothing and getting injured," he added.

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