Mumbai Indians today threw its weight behind Harbhajan Singh, who has been slapped a $15,000 fine for swearing at Deccan Chargers batsman T Suman, and said it was in the heat of the moment that the volatile spinner behaved in such a way.
"It was a heat-of-the-moment act. We needed a wicket at that stage and Harbhajan is always high on adrenaline. Let's not make an issue of it," said the IPL franchise's director (cricket) TA Sekar here today.
The India spin spearhead was fined USD 15,000 by the IPL authorities for swearing at Suman after foxing him with a high full toss that was patted back tamely to the bowler on the full by Suman.
"Harbhajan pleaded guilty to a Level 1 offence (Article 2.1.4), which relates to 'excessively audible or repetitious swearing'," the IPL management said in a statement.
"As a result, Match Referee Gundappa Viswanath imposed a penalty of USD 15,000," the statement added.
Sekar said his team respected the IPL and the fine would be paid but he was not clear whether the franchise would pick up the tab or the errant player for the breach.
Harbhajan, on his part, explained after the match last night that he was pumped up after sending Suman back as the same batsman had sent him soaring for successive sixes in last season's IPL tie held in South Africa.