It's not hard to reason this one but you migh...
The 31-year-old offspinner from Jalandhar has finally reached the 400-wicket mark in test cricket. Harbhajan Singh bowled West Indies wicketkeeper Carlton Baugh to achieve this feat at Windsor Park in Dominica in the third and final test of the ongoing India-West Indies series.
Harbhajan has had a relatively quiet outing on the bouncy tracks in the Caribbean, and has only managed to take the odd wicket here and there. However, he took two crucial wickets in the first innings at Dominica as the Indians restricted the hosts to a total of 204.
Bhajji first got Darren Sammy out caught for 20 just as he was looking to knock a few out of the park. His 400th wicket--that of Carlton Baugh's--came off an unplayable delivery that went on to hit the stumps. Harbhajan now ranks as the 11th member of the exclusive club of bowlers who have taken 400 scalps in tests. He now needs 5 more to equal Curtly Ambrose's haul and rise to the 10th spot on the most successful bowlers of all time.
Over the last 13 years, Harbhajan Singh has also wowed us with his game-saving knocks. Having started as a specialist bowler, he's now turned into a genuine all-rounder and boasts two well-deserved centuries in test cricket with several crucial and spunky fifties.
We all admire and respect him for all that he's done for Indian cricket, but one of the main things that defines Harbhajan is his temper. Bhajji has made more than a handful of foes on the cricket field. Here're the most prominent among them:
Harbhajan Singh's had several spats with the former Aussie skipper dating back to the late 1990s. Both these guys happen to be livewires, and the slightest disagreement tends to get amplified when these two come face to face--be it an unsuccessful appeal or, for that matter, Monkeygate!
Speaking of Monkeygate, who can ever forget the poor "victim" of Bhajji's alleged "racial slur." These two are cricket's official on-again-off-again couple! They were the worst of enemies when Harbhajan Singh allegedly called Symonds a monkey on the field. Then, during the first three editions of the IPL they started tolerating each other, but barely so. However, in the most recent IPL, they were part of the same team, and even appeared friendly. We were truly surprised to see Symonds barking out words of encouragement everytime Bhajji took to his bowling mark!
Tempers were flaring during a close match between India and Pakistan in the 2010 Asia Cup. Just then, the Pakistani speedster went ahead and egged on a tense Harbhajan Singh with some good ol' fashioned sledging. Charged up, Bhajji knocked off the winning runs by smashing a huge hit over mid wicket. And as he punched his fist while walking off the ground, he gestured at an irate Shoaib Akhtar, who returned the favor by hurling back a few choice words of his own. Two of the best in action indeed!
Sreesanth is no saint, but we don't think he deserved a slap in the face for a little in-your-face celebration. A weepy-eyed Sreesanth sought a shoulder to cry on after Bhajji decided to put an end to his school boy antics with one tight slap! Harbhajan even publicly apologized for his actions, but the imprint left on Sreesanth's cheek will last forever.
For his passion, aggression, talent, and most recent accomplishment, Bhajji's our sports hero of the week. Here's some vintage Bhajji action for you to check out:
-Picture courtesy Reuters-
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