DNA Exclusive: Harbhajan Singh blames MS Dhoni, BCCI for Team India ouster

Former India cricketer Harbhajan Singh, who retired last month from all forms of cricket, spoke to Zee News editor-in-chief Sudhir Chaudhary on a range of topics and the legendary spinner dropped a bombshell by claiming that some Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) officials and former skipper MS Dhoni were responsible for his ouster from Team India.

Harbhajan is considered as India’s most successful off-spin bowler having bagged 711 wickets, including 28 fifers and five 10-wicket hauls across formats. However, the 41-year-old last December announced his retirement from all forms of competitive cricket after falling out of favour in the latter part of his decorated career.

Now, when Bhajji has finally hanged his boots, the legendary spinner has opened up about the treatment he received from some BCCI officials and made explosive revelations about his Indian cricket journey in an exclusive interview with Zee News.

“Luck has always favoured me. Just some external factors were not by my side and maybe, they were completely against me. This is because of the way I was bowling or the rate at which I was moving ahead. I was 31 when I took 400 wickets and if I would have played another 4-5 years, keeping in mind the kind of standards I had set for myself, I can tell you that I would have taken another 100-150 wickets or more,” Harbhajan told Zee News.

“Yes. MS Dhoni was the captain then but I think this thing was above Dhoni’s head. To a certain extent, there were some BCCI officials who were involved in this and they didn’t want me and the captain may have supported that but a captain can never be above the BCCI. The BCCI officials have always been bigger than the captain, coach, or the team,” he revealed.

Harbhajan further pointed out the unmatched support Dhoni enjoyed at the behest of the BCCI.

“Dhoni had better backing than other players and if the rest of the players would have got the same kind of backing, then they would have played as well. It wasn’t as if the rest of the players forgot to swing a bat or didn’t know how to bowl all of a sudden,” he added.

“Every player wants to retire wearing the India jersey but luck will not always be on your side and sometimes what you wish for, doesn’t happen. The big names that you have taken like VVS (Laxman), Rahul (Dravid), Viru (Virender Sehwag), and many others who took retirement later didn’t get the chance,” Bhajji said.

Harbhajan also expressed his desire for a biopic to be made on his life. “I would like a film or a web series made on my life so that people can also know my side of the story, what kind of a guy I am, and what I do,” said Harbhajan.

“Can’t say who would be the villain in my biopic. There is not one but many.”

Also, Harbhajan named Sourav Ganguly as the best captain he has played under.

“Ganguly included me in the team at a time when I was kept out of the team. I played well and also took a hat-trick later. I enjoyed a lot with Ganguly. He gave me the freedom to play and made me a better cricketer,” the spinner said.

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