FIGHTER: Cancer survivor Yuvraj back for India
VISAKHAPATNAM: INDIAN all-rounder and World Cup hero Yuvraj Singh will don national colours for the first time since battling cancer when a two-match Twenty20 series against New Zealand starts today.
The 30-year-old left-hander underwent chemotherapy in the United States in March and April to treat a rare germ-cell tumour between his lungs which was diagnosed late last year.
Yuvraj, who was man of the tournament in India's World Cup triumph last year, has not played competitive cricket since two home Tests against the West Indies last November.
But the selectors recalled him as soon as he was declared fit by doctors at the National Cricket Academy in Bangalore where he had begun light training in July.
"It is hard to believe that I will be playing for India again," Yuvraj said ahead of the first Twenty20 game against the Black Caps in the southern coastal town of Visakhapatnam.
"A few months back I had trouble climbing four steps, now I can't wait to take the field. It is like starting a new life," said the all-rounder.
Veteran spinner Harbhajan Singh, also making a comeback after being out of favour with the selectors for a year, said he was delighted to see close friend Yuvraj back in action.
"Now this is what we call a comeback," said Harbhajan. "There can't be a bigger inspiration in cricket than Yuvi. It is a privilege to be back in the dressing room with him."
The match today and the second game in Chennai on Tuesday will serve as a tune-up for the World Twenty20 that starts in Sri Lanka on Sept 18. AFP