There are very few things Harbhajan Singh fears, but the offie was genuinely grateful that the Indian government disallowed the team from touring Pakistan. “Whatever has happened in Pakistan is bad… It’s shocking,” Harbhajan said soon after the team arrived in Wellington from Napier. “If they had wanted to attack, they could’ve attacked anybody. We were scheduled to be in Pakistan, but for our government cancelling the tour,” he said.
Harbhajan narrowly missed picking up a hattrick in Tuesday’s ODI but finished with 3 for 27 despite being introduced into the attack late.
“It would have been nice to get that hattrick but I am happy that I got three wickets in four balls. I think I bowled the right ball when I was on the hattrick, but he (Kyle Mills) got away. The hattrick wasn’t meant to be, but I am happy with whatever I got.”
Harbhajan also refused to be drawn into a debate on how the conditions in New Zealand did not favour spin bowling. “It’s all in the mind,” he said.
“Your role definitely changes on different wickets, in different conditions.
“If they don’t suit you that well, then your role vis-a-vis the others in the team changes a bit. When we play on turning tracks, it is my responsibility to get wickets and do well for the team. But when the conditions are not in your favour, you just have to bowl well and block runs so that it creates pressure, which the seamers can cash in on. At the same time, if you can attack and take two or three wickets, you have done your job.
“I have played enough not to let myself bogged down by the notion of having to play on unhelpful tracks.
“At the end of the day, you have to bowl your heart out — that’s what I look to do rather than think about where I am playing and against whom.”