Sachin Tendulkar is being missed: Harbhajan Singh

Harbhajan Singh was named Mumbai skipper after Sachin Tendulkar was ruled out of the tournament AFP

By CricketCountry Staff

Bengaluru: Oct 7, 2011

Stand-in Mumbai Indians skipper Harbhajan Singh says that things become difficult when star batsman and skipper Sachin Tendulkar is not in the playing eleven.

Tendulkar was ruled out of the Champions League T20 tournament after an old toe injury reoccured during India’s recent tour to England.

“Sachin is obviously being missed, but it is nice to have him around even when he is not playing. He is a great player and a great motivator. He has loads of knowledge and experience to pass on,” Harbhajan told Mid-Day.

Harbhajan was named Mumbai skipper after Tendulkar was ruled out of the tournament. Talking about his experience, the off-spinner said, “It was a great opportunity to lead Mumbai Indians. It’s a similar scenario to the first IPL when Sachin was not available, but I am more mature now. I have learnt a lot playing alongside Sachin.

“Young MI players were determined and waiting for an opportunity to prove themselves in the team. We started as underdogs, played freely… tried to enjoy ourselves on the field. Above all, Mumbai Indians owner Mrs Nita Ambani’s support has been incredible!”

Harbhajan said the youngsters have chipped in with their performances in absence of the big stars.

“To be honest, it is difficult not to have Sachin, Rohit Sharma and Munaf Patel in the side. Young players like Sarul Kanwar and Yuzvendra Chahal are cementing their place with all the talent they have. Every player has contributed in some way or the other way,”

India s no. 1 spinner said being a professional cricketer, one is expected to adapt to the conditions quickly but it takes time when one is constantly traveling from one country to another.

When asked about his axing from Team India for the first two ODIs against England, Harbhajan said, “I am here to play for Mumbai Indians and would like to focus on how to excel.”