Harbhajan Singh reveals whether he will retire after next IPL

Written by N Krishnamurthy

Off-spinner Harbhajan Singh, who despite being sidelined from the Indian team continues to play the Indian Premier League, provided an update on his IPL future. Harbhajan, who is third on the list of all-time leading IPL wicket-takers, with 150 scalps from 160 matches, reckons his body will decide whether this year’s tournament will be his last.

“I can’t say whether this will be my last IPL. It depends on my body. After four months of workout, rest, yoga sessions, I feel reinvigorated just like 2013, when I had 24 wickets in that IPL edition,” Harbhajan told PTI.

Harbhajan spent 10 seasons with four-time IPL champions Mumbai Indians (2008-2017) before joining Chennai Super Kings in 2018. He in fact led Mumbai Indians to a Champions League title in 2011. Harbhajan, who is the first Indian bowler to pick up a Test hat-trick, has been turning up decent performances in the IPL despite not playing any other form of cricket. Not playing domestic cricket to remain in shape for the IPL may be a worry for most cricketers, but at Harbhajan’s experience, there’s nothing wrong in it.

“To each his own. If someone feels he wants game time, good for him. If I bowl 2000 balls at the nets for a month, the amount of top-level cricket I have played, it’s good enough,” Harbhajan said.

“That every day was like an exam,” he said. “A lot of papers went well and I got good marks and a few I didn’t do well as much as I would have liked. “It was like a great leveller. When you played actively for India, you could never celebrate a good performance for days as there was another challenge right down the corner.”

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N Krishnamurthy