Harbhajan spins to philosophical mode after recall

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Published: Saturday, August 11, 2012, 12:40 [IST]
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Need to start from scratch: Harbhajan

Canterburry, Aug 11: India's off-spinner Harbhajan Singh who made a comeback to the national side after being picked for ICC World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka next month, celebrated his return to the national side by claiming three wickets for his county Essex during a match against Kent on Friday.

Having been ignored on a couple of occasions, Harbhajan got a lifeline as he was recalled for ICC World T20 that is slated to begin on September 18 in Sri Lanka.

Pleased with the recall, the turbanator said it was special and was feeling great to be back in the team.

"It is special. It is good to be back in the team. It is another opportunity to do well. I have played for so many years but that has all gone. I need to start fresh. I am very excited to be part of the team," Harbhajan told Cricinfo.

Harbhajan Singh's reaction was more philosophical but true as he said "nothing can be taken for granted."

"Even your failure and your success cannot be taken for granted. When you are going through a good patch you tend to ignore certain things. It could be your sleeping habits, it could be waking up at 6 am and going for a jog, it could be a gym session. You think you know you have to do all things. But when you come out of the team, you get injured, you are not doing that well and then you realise these are the things I am missing," he said.

Harbhajan who played for Punjab in the Ranji Trophy after being dropped from the national side, said his efforts then weren't enough as he had picked only three wickets off three Ranji matches.

"I played Ranji Trophy games but did not get too many wickets. I led Punjab well in the shorter formats. But that was not just enough," he said.

"I did not feel I had gone wrong drastically. That I had lost everything I had: the control on the ball, the way it spun. Those things were happening, but not the way I wanted it to be."

The senior off-spinner has said he was worried about injuries, which made him talk to a few people from different walks of life, when nothing went right, as he decided to take up the county deal, and played for Essex.

"I just want to go and enjoy the game because I felt during the time out I had forgotten to enjoy the game. Even in the IPL I was under pressure which came out of my own expectations. I was feeling like: I need to lead the side well, I need to perform well to comeback into the side. So that probably affected my chances," he was quoted as saying.

Following a poor run at his county stint, 3/35 against kent was Harbhajan's best performance this season, along with Maurice Chambers (4/31) and Graham Napier (3/26), as Harbhajan restricted Kent to 101 to set up a platform for a seven-wicket win.

Harbhajan's effort helped Essex emerge victorious as they had to score 55 to win which was achieved within 18.3 overs.

The turbanator had witnessed a similar situation in 2007, as he had signed a deal with Surrey, and a strong performance in the county season saw him grab the berth in the national side again, after being dropped for the England tour as he was back for the inaugural T20 Cup at South Africa.

With Harbhajan Singh's county career bringing him luck yet again, can this help India win the T20 Cup, similar to the inaugural edition as India defeated Pakistan to lift the Cup in 2007.


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