Sourav made me what I am: Harbhajan Singh on 'big difference' in playing under Sourav Ganguly & MS Dhoni

Updated on Dec 25, 2021 05:26 PM IST

The 41-year-old Harbhajan had a glorious stretch in international cricket, where he picked 417 wickets in 103 Tests, 269 wickets in 236 ODIs, and 25 scalps in 28 T20Is.

Chennai Super Kings M S Dhoni and Harbhajan Singh in action against Delhi Capitals during IPL cricket match at Kotla Grounds in New Delhi, India, on Tuesday, March 26, 2019. (Photo by Vipin Kumar/ Hindustan Times)(Vipin Kumar/HT PHOTO)
Chennai Super Kings M S Dhoni and Harbhajan Singh in action against Delhi Capitals during IPL cricket match at Kotla Grounds in New Delhi, India, on Tuesday, March 26, 2019. (Photo by Vipin Kumar/ Hindustan Times)(Vipin Kumar/HT PHOTO)
By, New Delhi

Widely regarded as one of the finest spinners that the sport has ever produced, Harbhajan Singh on Friday called time on his career. The 41-year-old off-spinner had a glorious stint in international cricket, where he picked 417 wickets in 103 Tests, 269 wickets in 236 ODIs, and 25 scalps in 28 T20Is.

Harbhajan was also a part of the ICC World T20 in 2007 and ODI World Cup in 2011, where the MS Dhoni-led unit added two major trophies to Indian cricket's trophy cabinet. But Harbhajan's best performance perhaps came under Sourav Ganguly in the 2001 Test series at home against Australia. He had picked 32 wickets in the three-match series where he had become the first Indian bowler to pick a Test hat-trick after he dismissed Ricky Ponting, Adam Gilchrist, and Shane Warne on successive deliveries.

After calling it a day, Harbhajan shared his experience of playing under the leadership of Ganguly and Dhoni. The tweaker said Ganguly handheld him when he was ‘No One'. When Dhoni came into the picture, Harbhajan had already become 'Someone'.

"It's a simple answer for me. Sourav Ganguly handheld me at that juncture of my career when I was a 'No One'. But when Dhoni became the captain, I was a "Someone". So you need to understand the big difference. Dada knew I had skills but didn't know whether I will deliver. In case of Dhoni, he knew that I have been there and done that. He knew that I have won matches before him and will win a few for him also," Harbhajan told PTI.

Harbhajan, who last played for India in March 2016 in a T20 against UAE, signed off a highly successful international career with innumerable memories. He heaped praise on Ganguly and explained how the leader played a key role during Harbhajan's formative years.

"In life and in profession, you need that one person, who will guide you at the proper moment and Sourav was that man for me. If Sourav wouldn't have fought for me and got me in the team, who knows, today you might not be taking this interview of mine. Sourav is the leader who made me what I am.

But yes, Dhoni certainly was a very good captain and he carried the legacy of Sourav and with Dhoni, together we fought some great battles that I will certainly cherish," he further said.

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