Exactly seven years ago, during the 22nd match of the ICC Cricket World Cup between India and Ireland at Bengaluru, Yuvraj Singh won his 22nd ODI Man of the Match award. Yuvraj has won a total of 27 ‘Man of the Match’ awards in ODI cricket. As far as Indians are concerned in this feat, he is fourth on the list after Sachin Tendulkar (62), Sourav Ganguly (31) and Virat Kohli (28).
Mahendra Singh Dhoni, the then Indian captain, had put the visitors in to bat after winning the toss. Zaheer Khan drew first blood for the Indians as he dismissed Paul Stirling (0) and Ed Joyce (4) in successive overs. Ireland were cruising ahead with a 113-run partnership for the third wicket between William Porterfield and Neil O’Brien before Virat Kohli ran-out the latter in the 27th over.
Yuvraj did not let this opening slip out of India’s hands as dismissed the opposition batsmen at regular intervals from this point. In the 30th over, Andrew White (5) edged a Yuvraj-delivery only to be caught by Dhoni behind the stumps. In which was Yuvraj’s fifth over, he caught and bowled Kevin O’Brien (9) in the name of a soft dismissal.
In his seventh over, he got rid of the danger man in Porterfield (75), further denting Ireland’s progress. Yuvraj’s magic was not only about the wickets, but, also about his economy rate. His bowling figures at that point of time read 7-0-18-2.
Perhaps, citing his wicket-taking ability in mind, Dhoni persisted with Yuvraj and the left-armer did not disappoint his captain. In the 42nd over, he trapped John Mooney (5) in front of the stumps to bag his fourth victim of the day. In Yuvraj’s last over, Dhoni opted for a successful review as Alex Cussack was also out leg before the wicket for 24. Yuvraj Singh had registered his maiden ODI five-wicket haul and career-best bowling figures of 10-0-31-5.
Watch the video to see how Yuvraj reacted after his maiden five-wicket haul:
If Yuvraj’s match-winning performance with the ball was not enough, he came back in the second innings to his an unbeaten half-century which guided India to chase the 208-run target.
Yuvraj came in to bat at 3-87 in the 21st over when Sachin Tendulkar (38) was trapped in front of the stumps by George Dockrell. Soon, Virat Kohli (34) was run-out, leaving India at 4-100. With his team in a spot of bother, Yuvraj stitched a 67-run partnership with Dhoni (34).
Yuvraj and Yusuf Pathan (30*) sealed the chase for India in 46 overs. Yuvraj ended up scoring 50* (75) with the help of three fours. Watch the top shots from the match: