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Indian fans lack sportsmanship: Yuvraj

Yuvraj Singh looks back during the match between Pune Warriors and Kings XI Punjab in the outskirts of Mumbai.

MUMBAI: India’s World Cup hero Yuvraj Singh on Sunday said cricket fans in India lacked sportsmanship and there unreal expectations could be ‘killing’ for the players at times.

“I’m very glad the next World Cup won’t be held in India,” said Yuvraj in an interview with a leading newspaper on Sunday. “You go to the hotel lobby and people say, ‘You have to win for India’. There’s so much intensity, it’s almost as if they’re saying, ‘Win or I’ll shoot you in the head’.”

The well-built middle-order batsman said the cricketers were under tremendous pressure during the World Cup, not only because of the competition alone but more so from the snarling fans.

“They (the fans) were constantly breathing down our necks, I would say,” said Yuvraj. “It becomes hard to take that kind of nagging stuff all the time.”

Yuvraj, however, insisted that winning the World Cup was the best thing to ever happen to him, and the high is yet to fade. “Every morning, for the next four years, I’m going to wake up and say, ‘I belong to a team that is the world champion’. So many great players have outstanding careers but never win a World Cup. This team has, and no one can ever take that away from us.”

When asked about the fiasco of the batting PowerPlays in the game against South Africa, Yuvraj said: “Sometimes the team management would decide to take the PowerPlay, though the batsmen on the field were reluctant to. That’s what happened against South Africa too.

Eventually we decided it was best to let the batsmen on the field take the call,” he said referring to his team’s only lost game in the World Cup.