Veteran off-spinner Harbhajan Singh has predicted Australia will lose the upcoming four-match Test series against India 3-0 even if they play well on spin-friendly pitches.
“If Australia play well, India will win 3-0. That is if Australia play well. I don’t think the wickets are going to be that easy for them. Otherwise, 4-0,” Harbhajan was quoted as saying by The New Daily.
Harbhajan, who himself has caused a lot of problems to the Australian side in Tests, pronounced Steven Smith’s side lacks experience in a spin heavy attack led by Nathan Lyon.
“That Australian team in the past had so much will and belief. I don’t think this team has the belief to win in these conditions,” Harbhajan opined.
In 18 Tests against Australia, the 36-year-old Jalandhar-born Harbhajan Singh has 95 wickets.
“From the first ball you need to bowl that correct speed. Not many spinners have done that in India for the last 15 years,” harbhajan said.
Harbhajan also expressed Australia’s inexperienced batting line-up would be tested on the raging turners in India during their challenging six-week tour.
“This team, apart from (David) Warner and (Steve) Smith, I don’t think will be able to play the game they play in Australian conditions here in India. If the ball starts spinning from the first ball, I don’t think they will survive for long,” Harbhajan added.
The out-of-favour spinner said Australia could draw a Test but will still go on to lose the series.
However, Harbhajan feels visitors’ spinners would find it difficult to acclimatize to Indian conditions during the Test series before saying they can leave an impact.
Formidable India sit at the top of ICC Test Rankings and Australia haven’t won a Test series in India post 2004.
In 2004, Australia won against India 2-1.
“I don’t think they have the quality to do so. It is different bowling here and bowling there (in Australia),” Harbhajan concluded.
Interestingly, Australia haven’t won a Test match in sub-continent since 2011.
The first Test between India-Australia will kick-start in Pune on Thursday (February 23).