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Bhajji crucial to our success: Greg

The coach was profuse in his praise of the bowler on the eve of the sixth ODI against Sri Lanka.

india Updated: Nov 08, 2005 21:10 IST

Coach Greg Chappell and Harbhajan Singh have patched up. At least that was the impression one got from their joint press meet on Wednesday on the eve of the sixth one-day cricket international against Sri Lanka.

Chappell was profuse in his praise of the off-spinner who had not long ago accused the Aussie of sowing seeds of "insecurity" among the players with his tough regime.

"Harbhajan has been an important part of our success. His bowling in the game where Dhoni made 183 was just as important," Chappell said.

"To bowl 10 overs and concede only 30 odd runs in these small grounds is very good bowling," he added.

The series has marked a remarkable turn around for the 'Turbanator' who has not enjoyed the best of fortunes in the last couple of years.

In 2003-04, he aggravated a finger injury and remained on the sidelines during the larger part of the tour of Australia.

The season that followed was even worse as he was twice reported for suspect action in the space of three months before being advised by the ICC to stick to his 'lab action'.

Then came the outburst early this season against Chappell who himself was on a confrontational path with then skipper Sourav Ganguly.

Harbhajan said he had not been under any pressure going into the series.

"There was no pressure on me. I have been working hard since Zimbabwe. I got my rhythm in the Challenger Series."

"I have practiced different things in the nets. I tried out different angles and a few other things and I have used them in the matches," Harbhajan said.

Among the many new ideas he has come up with is to attack the left-handed batsmen from around the wicket.

"It is part of our plan. We had discussed each (Sri Lankan) batsman before the series. We will keep trying out new things in our bowling," Harbhajan said.

The 25-year-old offie said Powerplay rules had added to the challenges and pressures of a slow bowler in one-day cricket.

"In international cricket a bowler must adjust to these changes. What is needed is that a bowler has to be confident and brave enough," he said.

First Published: Nov 08, 2005 13:40 IST