Yuvraj Singh`s ton powers ROW to 293/7

London: India`s Yuvraj Singh made a strokeful 132 to power the Rest of the World XI to 293 for seven against the Sachin Tendulkar-led Marelybone Cricket Club (MCC) in the Lord`s bi-centenary celebrations 50-over match here on Saturday.

Electing to bat in overcast conditions, the Shane Warne-led side slumped to 68 for 5 in the 12th over when Pakistan off-spinner Saeed Ajmal (4/45) bagged four wickets but soon Yuvraj and Paul Collingwood stitched together a 131-run sixth-wicket partnership to put the innings back on track.

The opening combo of Virender Sehwag and Adam Gilchrist had given ROW a brisk 54-run start in 6.5 overs but Brett Lee (2/55) cleaned up the Indian dasher for 22 and then Ajmal took over.

Ajmal`s country-mate Umar Gul though sustained an injury and hobbled off after bowling two overs post sharing the new ball with Lee.

Gilchrist displayed his trademark pull and cut shots as he scored 22 runs off 24 balls, including 5 fours before being stumped off Ajmal. The champion off-spinner then trapped Bangladesh`s Tamim Iqbal (1) LBW, got England`s Kevin Pietersen (10) stumped and finally bowled his team-mate Shahid Afridi for a two-ball duck. But strangely Tendulkar took Ajmal off the attack after his third over, probably to give the crowd some entertainment in the exhibition tie.

Collingwood scored 40 runs off 64 balls, hitting 3 fours, but it was Yuvraj who really put on the fireworks. He brought up his half-century in the 25th over of the innings, off only 53 balls and including 4 fours as well as 2 sixes.

Yuvi didn`t let up, perhaps trying to make an impression on the Indian selectors, who will soon be gathering to select an ODI side for the ongoing England tour. He brought up his hundred off 114 balls in the 45th over. In doing so, he put on 84 runs for the seventh wicket with Peter Siddle (34 not out, 32 balls, 4 fours). He added 32 more runs off another 20 balls faced and was finally dismissed off Tendulkar (1/33) in the penultimate over. Warne (3 not out) was the other unbeaten batsman.

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