Saturday, October 25, 2008

Angry Harbhajan lashes out at Gilchrist

The war of words involving Adam Gilchrist, Sachin Tendulkar and Harbhajan Singh has continued.

Harbhajan Singh has hit back at Adam Gilchrist’s comments on Sachin Tendulkar and said that Gilchrist was not respected anyway due to his own on-field behaviour. Gilchrist labelled as a “joke” the evidence Tendulkar gave in January during the hearing into Harbhajan’s alleged racist remarks against Andrew Symonds.

“He should not be talking about Sachin. It is all rubbish," Harbhajan told the Age. "We don't respect him. He pretends to be a saint and people say he walks when he nicks, but why did he appeal when batsmen don't nick?

"He always changes his mind according to a situation. If Australia is close to a victory he is always going up [appealing], whether it is out or not out. We don't need him to say these things [about Tendulkar] just because he is retired."

Harbhajan was alleged to have called Symonds a monkey and was initially suspended for three Tests, although the ban was overturned on appeal. Gilchrist was annoyed that Tendulkar told the appeal Harbhajan had used a Hindi term that sounded like monkey, although he had earlier given evidence that he could not hear Harbhajan’s comment.

"I don't want to talk about that episode again and again. It is over," Harbhajan said. "If you talk to any guy who plays or follows cricket about Sachin Tendulkar, they will talk about the respect he commands. These guys can't come close to him. I am really shocked."

Harbhajan said the ill-feeling between the two sides that spilled over in the series in Australia had long since passed. He said both teams had played in the right spirit in the first two Tests in India this month.

"We are very focused on cricket and on the next Test in Delhi," Harbhajan said. "We know Australia will come back very strong. It has been a great series so far. There have been no dramas in the first two Tests. I hope the next two will be played in the gentleman's spirit."