Yuvraj Singh’s nocturnal excursions are causing a firestorm in the Indian Premier League (IPL) team he plays for, Kings XI, Punjab.
Yuvraj has been reported at least twice for sneaking out of his hotel without informing the authorities concerned, the second time on Tuesday night. On this second occasion, the Chandigarh police sent in a written complaint to the management of both the IPL and Kings XI.
Kings XI Chief Executive Officer Anil Srivastava said it was an “internal matter”. “We are discussing it,” he told Hindustan Times. “Players had been briefed well in advance about the dos and don’ts with regard to security.”
The star cricketer, however, said the accusations and reports were malicious and baseless. “This is all rubbish. Whenever I’ve left the team hotel, I’ve taken permission from the relevant authorities and local police. I don’t know where all this speculation is coming from,” Yuvraj told HT on Thursday afternoon, a day after Kings XI went down to the bottom of the IPL rankings table.
Though Kings XI co-owner Ness Wadia said he did not want to comment, he had made little secret of his feelings on the matter of icon players in an interview to HT last week. “The icon player concept was introduced with a lot of good intentions. But maybe it hasn’t worked for some teams,” he said. “I think franchisees know who their valuable players are. You don’t need an icon tag.”
Yuvraj is the icon player for the Punjab team. He has been in poor form so far, but attitudes towards him could well change drastically if he gets going on the field.