Dhoni hoping for 3rd consecutive ton from Yuvraj

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Kanpur, Nov 19 (UNI) Heaping praise on Yuvraj Singh, Team India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni today hoped that the explosive batsman will complete a hat-trick of centuries during the third one-dayer against England here tomorrow.

Yuvraj has been in stupendous form during the ongoing seven-match series. He slammed a stupendous innings of 138 runs off just 78 balls in the opening encounter at Rajkot.

He proved England's nemesis in the following match at Indore as well, hitting a second successive century and claiming four crucial wickets.

The stylish left-hander is in line to become only the fourth player to score three consecutive ODI centuries, with only Pakistan's Zaheer Abbas and Saeed Anwar and South African Herschelle Gibbs having achieved that feat.

''I hope Yuvraj scores his third consecutive century here and achieves the feat. That would suit the team as well. He is in superb form at the moment. One thing about Yuvi is, when he gets going he is among the best,'' Dhoni told mediapersons after a practice session at the Green Park Stadium.

Stating that it is a pleasure to watch Yuvraj play when he is in form, Dhoni suggested that the fact that the Punjab batsman is a left-hander may be a contributing factor to his success.

''On song, Yuvraj is simply one of the best, even the top bowlers struggle against him. He really stands out because he is a strong-hitter and likes to play along the ground,'' the Indian skipper said.

''I have noticed that all big players who slog after coming lower down the order are left-handers. May be one of the reasons is that the bowlers have sorted out the right-handers. They can bowl yorkers or low full toss to a right-hander but sometimes struggle to find the right line to tackle the left-handers.'' he added.

Pace sensation Ishant Sharma, who was impressive during the recent Test series against Australia, has been declared fit for the match, and had a long session at the nets. Dhoni praised the fast bowler for his work ethic but warned that the youngster needs proper care to ensure that he stays free of injuries.

''In the Test series against Australia, he bowled long spells and was tired. But even then, bowling his third spell of the day, he gave it his best and bowled his heart out, putting in the same amount of effort. You have to take care of kids like him,'' he stated.

''He is just 19 or 20, you have to make sure that he does not sustain injuries and remains in the right frame of mind.'' Zaheer Khan, Harbhajan Singh and Virender Sehwag were missing from today's nets and Dhoni said they were being allowed some much needed rest.

''All of them have been continuously playing for a long time and thats why they decided to opt out of practice,'' he revealed.


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