With several flashes of his blade in a match-winning knock, India's comeback kid Yuvraj Singh emphatically reintroduced himself to international cricket on Thursday.
"Yuvi's back, my friend," the dynamic allrounder told a packed media conference after his unbeaten 77 off 35 balls stole a six-wicket victory from Australia in the Twenty20 fixture played at Rajkot.
On the back of Yuvraj's blistering innings, India recovered from 4-100 to reach the target of 202 with two balls to spare.
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As predicted by Australian skipper George Bailey the day before the match, Yuvraj started slowly before lifting the tempo at the right time and taking the game away from the tourists before they even realised it was happening.
It was his first international fixture since January, and his most dominant on-field performance since last year's cancer battle.
Looking leaner and fitter than in his first comeback, starting with the World T20 in September last year, Yuvraj said this innings was particularly special to him considering all he'd had to overcome to break back into the national team.
"It is special," he said.
"I've come back after a few months out.
"I've worked quite hard in the off-season and worked on the mental aspect of my game.
"... I've been playing well in the domestic season.
"I've had a tough off-season."
As he'd promised in the lead-up to the lone T20 fixture, Bailey set fields to challenge the 31-year-old - daring him to attempt the ridiculous.
And he did, clubbing five sixes and eight boundaries as Australia watched the match slip through their fingers.
"We challenged him to hit to different parts of the ground and he accepted it gratefully," Bailey said.
"It was a key innings."
The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia.
The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia
First Posted 11 October, 2013 10:37AM AEST