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No score is safe anymore in limited-overs cricket: Yuvraj Singh

India Today logo India Today 01-09-2016

It might be mind-boggling to watch one team after another push the boundaries of limited-overs cricket with bigger and bigger scores, but the 'six-sixes man' Yuvraj Singh is not surprised.

Speaking on England's record-setting 444 for 3 against Pakistan in the third ODI at Nottingham, Yuvraj told India Today, "The five-fielders in the circle rule is a bit tough for bowlers. 444 is a huge score. England batsmen were devastating. The next target will be 450-470 in one day cricket."

Not just the overall score of 444, England broke numerous other records during the course of the match. Alex Hales' career-best 171 became the highest score by an English batsman in ODIs. While Jos Buttler's fifty in just 22 balls is the fastest by an Englishman, the 59 boundaries hit in the England innings are the joint-most in an ODI innings.

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So will it continue to be as one-sided in the limited-overs? Will bowlers just have to make peace with it? Or is it that bowling quality has gone down over the years?

Yuvraj, who has been a match-winning all-rounder for India, feels it comes down to the rules and the mindset.

"The quality of bowlers hasn't gone down and the pitches used to be like this earlier too. Two new balls, and the fielding restrictions have changed the game. The ball continues to come onto the bat well, it doesn't get old. Part-timers have it tough especially now. The ball doesn't swing much, doesn't reverse much now. So scores will continue to rise due to such rules."

"Since T20s advent in 2003, the skill of batsmen has gone higher and higher. You know the batsmen is going to come for you from the first ball. Bowlers have to try very hard to adjust to conditions and every batsman. The thinking of chasing scores has changed. Once you are chasing 240-250 in T20s, if you play the same way, you can chase down 400 runs in ODIs. Earlier, 300 was considered safe. But now nothing is a safe score in T20s and ODIs."

Ominous signs indeed for bowlers.

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