Harbhajan Back in Indian Team, Gavaskar Welcomes

New Delhi
Harbhajan Back in Indian Team, Gavaskar Welcomes

Sunil Gavaskar today welcomed the return of Harbhajan Singh to the Indian cricket team after more than two years, saying the off-spinner looks in good form even though he doesn't need to prove anything to anyone with close to 700 international wickets under his belt.

"With Harbhajan's selection, the selectors have shown that they are picking players on current form. Whether senior or junior, if a player is doing well, he will come back (to the team)," Gavaskar told NDTV after Harbhajan was picked in the Test squad for the one-off match in Bangladesh.

Harbhajan, whose last India appearance came in a Test match in March 2013, has been bowling well in the ongoing IPL, taking 16 wickets in 14 games at 25.75.

Asked whether it made more sense to pick the feisty spinner in the one-day squad, Gavaskar said: "Well he has more than 400 Test wickets to his name, he doesn't need to prove anything to anyone or depend on his Ranji Trophy performance. Sometimes it is not only about taking wickets, it is also about how you are bowling and Harbhajan looks to be in good form. He is bowling slow, getting the ball to turn, getting the bounce, selectors have taken note of that".

While Harbhajan's inclusion will not let Ravichandran Ashwin relax and breed healthy competition in the team, the fact that he has made a return doesn't give a good picture of the spin talent in the country.

"Yes, certainly, it is not a good sign. It shows that we don't have many good off-spinners on the domestic circuit," said Gavaskar.

Contrary to speculation regarding some players being rested for the Bangladesh tour, the BCCI selectors picked a full strength squad for the Test and three one-dayers.

Gavaskar said the selection showed India are not taking Bangladesh lightly.

"Bangladesh have played good cricket recently, whether beating Pakistan at home or in the World Cup. It could also be the case the players did not want to rest. One normally asks for rest when he is completely tired and not able to give his best for the country," he added.

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