Yuvraj Singh's six sixes off a Stuart Broad over on Wednesday not only linked their names forever in the record books, those 36 runs also turned out to be the difference between the teams. Chasing India's 218 for three in their Super Eights game, England needed exactly 36 runs off the last over. But they didn't have Yuvraj in their side — they managed only 17.
Yuvraj was fired up when he faced Broad in the 19th over of the innings — a spat and angry words between him and Andrew Flintoff in the 18th over had roused Yuvraj. "He (Flintoff) charged me up for sure," Yuvraj said after receiving the Man of the Match award. "But obviously, it happens in the game. Opposition players do have a go at each other. It is part of the game, but it charged me up a bit. When you get a few words from someone, you want to give it back with the bat."
England skipper Paul Collingwood agreed. Acknowledging Yuvraj's knock as the "best exhibition of hitting", he said: "It (the spat) obviously didn't help us."
View from the other end
Skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who watched the super hitting from the other end, praised his deputy's knock. "A couple of days ago, a question was asked if Yuvraj Singh was in the team just for his bowling. Now I really don't need to say anything," Dhoni grinned.
Hitting six sixes in an over meant a lot to the stylish southpaw as he himself was hit for five sixes in a row by England's Dimitri Mascarenhas at the Oval on September 5.
"I was the one who got hit for five sixes in the Oval game — it is a horrible feeling at the end of the day!" Yuvraj said. "I am not really a bowler, but Stuart is a regular bowler. I feel sorry for him. I had a horrible day (on September 5). You have some good and bad days as a bowler."
Yuvraj, however, made it a point to mention that he was the first batsman to hit a fast bowler for sixes in an over. "It is a great feeling to hit six sixes off the main bowler. I thank God for it. After (being hit for) five sixes, I had so many phone calls — I have never got so many calls even after scoring hundreds. I got 150 calls and people were making fun of me. I said, 'God, this is not right, you have to help me!'"
So when did he realise he could hit all six balls for sixes? "After the fourth ball I thought I could hit all six for sixes," he said. "It is tough to do that, and it was only after the fourth ball that I thought of it." And what about becoming the second left-hander after the great Garry Sobers to have achieved the feat in a big game? "A lot of people say I bat like him, but I am not even at half way of what he was," he said. "But it is a great feeling when people tell you that. It is nice to hear that."