Yuvraj Singh started the 2017 Indian Premier League season with a bang as he smashed 62 off 27 balls to help Sunrisers Hyderabad beat Royal Challengers Bangalore by 35 runs in the opening game of the tournament at the Rajiv Gandhi International stadium in Uppal on Wednesday. (IPL 2017 Full coverage)
Yuvraj reached his landmark of just 23 balls, his fastest IPL fifty and his efforts helped him win the Man of the Match award.
Speaking after the end of the match, Yuvraj said that he had worked hard on his batting. “The comeback for India has helped me and I am totally free in my mind. I have to go express myself.”
Hyderabad a lucky venue
Yuvraj has always performed well at the Rajiv Gandhi International stadium. In 2005, he smashed a magnificent 103 against South Africa as he helped India recover after being 35/5. In 2007, he blasted 121 against Australia but in went in vain as they lost the match by 47 runs.
“Hyderabad has been a lucky place for me. I scored a lot of runs for India while playing for U-19 and I scored runs when I made my comeback for India at this venue,” Yuvraj said.
Sunrisers Hyderabad got off to a great start thanks to a 74-run stand between Shikhar Dhawan (40) and Moises Henriques (52). Henriques shared a 58-run stand with Yuvraj as he helped SRH reach 207/4.
“We started where we ended. Great performance from the batsmen. Shikhar Dhawan shared a great partnership and Moises Henriques and I finished it off well. Bowlers did the job,” Yuvraj added.
The defending champions will next take on Gujarat Lions on Sunday.