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Rediff.com  » Cricket » Rahul Sharma a bright candidate for ODIs: Yuvraj

Rahul Sharma a bright candidate for ODIs: Yuvraj

Last updated on: May 21, 2011 08:32 IST

'Hopefully, Pune will do better in next IPL'

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Debutants Pune Warriors India is already knocked out of this year's Indian Premier League, skipper Yuvraj Sigh is optimistic of a strong comeback by the team in the next edition of the Twenty20 tournament.

- IPL-4 2011-coverage

"This was our first season as a team and, hopefully, we will do better in the next edition," Yuvraj said.

Explaining the inconsistent run of his team in the current edition of the IPL, the left-hander said, "We could not click as a bunch, besides we were hampered by some injuries to key players, like Ashish Nehra and Angelo Mathews."


Image: Yuvraj Singh

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'Rahul Sharma has a great future'

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Yuvraj, however, hailed the performance of young Mohnish Mishra and Rahul Sharma.

He was particularly impressed by the latter's display and said the lanky leg-spinner has a great future.

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"He has done very well. If you see, he has taken around 17 wickets in the tournament so far. We are also working on his batting and fielding, he is a bright candidate for one-dayers in the near future," he said, during the inauguration of a sports injury center in Delhi.


Image: Rahul Sharma

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'Give Ganguly some time'

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On former India captain Sourav Ganguly's return to competitive cricket, Yuvraj said, "He deserved the opportunity but you have to give him some time."

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The 29-year-old also hailed the play-off format that is being introduced for the first time in the IPL, saying "it is a great system".


Image: Sourav Ganguly

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'Salute Warne's career and his performance'

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Yuvraj also lavished praise on Australian spin wizard Shane Warne, who played his last competitive game against Mumbai Indians on Friday.

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"He is a legend of the game and a great captain.

"He did not get the opportunity to lead the Australian team but has shown how good he is. It has always been a learning experience to be with him. Salute his career and his performance," he said.


Image: Shane Warne

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'Season ahead is going to be hectic'

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Asked about the surfeit of cricket being played by international players these days, Yuvraj said, "We are aware of how much cricket we are playing; it is not that we did not know that IPL will start just after the World Cup. All players prepare themselves accordingly."

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He, however, reiterated that senior Indian players, like Sachin Tendulkar, Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Zaheer Khan, who were rested for the upcoming ODI series in the West Indies, deserve the break to refresh themselves ahead of a hectic international schedule.

"Senior players deserved the rest, and I believe it is a great opportunity for youngsters to prove their mettle.

"There are a few days break after the IPL. The season ahead is going to be hectic with the team playing in the West Indies followed by a series against England and Australia," Yuvraj said.


Image: Yuvi with Dhoni and Tendulkar

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Yuvi eyeing return to Test squad

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He said he is eagerly awaiting forthcoming ODI series against the West Indies, and insisted that by virtue of a strong performance in the ODIs, he is eyeing a comeback into the Test squad.

Asked if he would feature in the inaugural Sri Lankan Premier League which gets underway on July 19, he replied, "If I am not playing for India, then why not."

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On Saturday's battle of bottom-rankers -- between his side and Delhi Daredevils -- at the Feroz Shah Kotla ground, the Pune Warriors skipper said it will be a fight for pride.

"Delhi, like us, has also has lost some important players to injuries and it will be a fight for not finishing at the bottom," Yuvraj said.


Image: Yuvraj Singh in whites

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