Yuvraj: Indian players avoid breaks risking losing place in team

Even though the Indian Cricketers Association had been formed for former cricketers, Yuvraj says, it is time to have a players association for the current cricketers.

Yuvraj Singh feels current players should not fear for their place in the side.   -  SANDEEP SAXENA

It’s been less than a fortnight since former India captain Sourav Ganguly has taken over as the president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). And Ganguly’s former team-mate, Yuvraj Singh believes, that with Ganguly at the helm, great things are waiting to happen.

“Cricket from the administration and cricketer's point of view are two different things. Someone who has been a very successful captain will run cricket from a player's perspective where cricketer's concerns can be heard. It would not happen earlier,” Yuvraj said during an interaction on Monday.

“Earlier, they would make decisions and cricketer's versions were not heard. Now he will listen to what cricketers want.”

Even though the Indian Cricketers Association (ICA) had been formed for former cricketers, Yuvraj says, it is time to have a players association for the current cricketers.

“What I would like to see is a players association coming up because I think the players’ voice was never heard before. So I think a players association that all other countries have, we should also have. We deserve it.

There are a lot of times we have been asked to play cricket that we don't want to. We have to play with the pressure that if we don't play we will be thrown out. That pressure has to go off the players that even if they are tired or fatigued or carrying injuries, they have to play. That support should be given to the players,” he said.

Drawing reference to Australian Glenn Maxwell -- who withdrew himself from the team due to mental health issues -- Yuvraj said: “We see outside India if the players are fatigued and tired mentally, like is the case with Maxwell, he has taken a break because he is feeling it. Our players can't do that because they fear they may lose their place. So players association is very important. Let's see if it comes in,” he said, making it clear that the present players should have more say.

“The current players need more. Somebody has to stand up and (demand). I don’t know who’s going to do that, but definitely that’s something I would like to see happening for the players. Every voice should be heard in players association, not only captain or vice-captain or senior players. Every player should be asked about their opinions.”

'Pink ball hard on bowlers'

After taking charge as the Board chief, Ganguly has convinced India captain Virat Kohli to play the first-ever Day-Night Test in India -- against Bangladesh on November 22-- and Yuvraj believes that such efforts are important for the betterment of Test cricket.

Having played pink-ball cricket in the Duleep Trophy a couple of years ago, Yuvraj said: “Pink ball is very hard on the bowlers, because the ball wasn’t swinging and it was swinging in the light. After a while it just got very flat with the ball, we played in the afternoon there was no swing, in the evening there was bit of swing. Pink ball worked in Australia because scores were lesser, you got to play more of this cricket, you can’t just play one test match of pink ball a year, you have to keep on playing few games to see how exciting pink ball can become.”

He also admits that dew will be a major factor. “Dew will be a big factor and it won’t be easy to play under lights when it is humid or winter, so dew could be a factor. You have to play more games to see what are the best conditions to play with pink ball in a Test match, you can’t say in one Test match that conditions are going to be tough, you have to play more games to see whether it will be successful or no, so it is a good time to test it…”