Harbhajan Singh, a veteran Indian spinner, has picked MS Dhoni as his all-time T20 XI skipper. The now 40-year-old MS Dhoni started his T20I career, guiding Team India to glory in the inaugural edition of the T20 World Cup in South Africa in 2007, a year before IPL started. Thereafter, he helped his IPL franchise Chennai Super Kings win the Indian Premier League four times and the Champions League T20 a couple of times as well.
As his openers, Harbhajan Singh picked India’s Rohit Sharma and West Indies’ Chris Gayle. Then, for the No.3 slot, the Turbanator went for England’s Jos Buttler. He said that Jos Buttler is reliable and has the ability to dictate terms after getting set.
Harbhajan Singh: Jos Buttler Is A Reliable Batsman
Jos Buttler has scored in excess of 250 every time since making his IPL debut in 2016. While he had to leave IPL 2019 midway to join the England team for the World Cup 2019 preparations, he made an impact during his eight-game stint, scoring 311 runs, following his 548-run season in IPL 2018.
The right-hander scored 328 runs in the IPL 2020 and 254 runs in 7 games in the India leg of IPL 2021 that included a ton-his career-best 124 before opting out of the UAE leg IPL 2021.
“He is a very reliable batsman and someone who can control the game once he gets set,” Harbhajan was quoted as saying.
At No.4, Harbhajan Singh picked Shane Watson, who retired from all forms of cricket in November 2020. Back in 2016, after the World T20 in India, Shane Watson bid adieu to international cricket. However, Harbhajan Singh said that Shane Watson had the potential to put in all-around performances and help his team win matches.
“Being an all-rounder, he has won many matches through his batting ability and has won games with the ball as well,” he stated.
In IPL 2020, held entirely in UAE, Shane Watson scored 299 runs from 11 matches averaging 29.9 at a strike rate of 121.05. CSK finished their campaign in seventh place with 12 points from 14 matches, and it was the first time they couldn’t reach the playoffs.
Harbhajan Singh: Kieron Pollard Can Be Moved Up And Down The Batting Order As Per Demands Of The Situation
Harbhajan Singh went for South Africa’s AB de Villiers, India’s MS Dhoni, West Indies’ Dwayne Bravo, and Kieron Pollard at No. 5, 6, 7, and 8 respectively. However, the veteran said that Kieron Pollard could also be slotted up the order if the situation demands so.
“The batting order can be altered and Pollard could be moved up and down the order depending on the needs of the side. Any T20 team is incomplete without Pollard,” Harbhajan added.
He also picked the wily Sunil Narine, who has plied his trade in numerous T20 leagues around the world. Next, Harbhajan Singh went for Lasith Malinga and Jasprit Bumrah as his two specialist fast bowlers. Lasith Malinga is the leading wicket-taker in the history of the IPL, having racked up 170 wickets at an economy rate of 7.14. Jasprit Bumrah, on the other hand, is the Indian pace spearhead across formats.
Indian skipper Virat Kohli and Pakistani batter Babar Azam, who doesn’t feature in IPL, were not picked by Harbhajan Singh in his all-time T20I playing XI. Another surprise exclusion is Afghanistan’s Rashid Khan, who has the best economic rate in IPL. Also, missing was the 2011 ODI World cup and 2007 T20I World cup hero Yuvraj Singh, who hit 6 maximums in an over against England’s Stuart Broad in the 2007 T20I World Cup.
Harbhajan Singh’s T20 XI
Rohit Sharma, Chris Gayle, Jos Buttler, Shane Watson, AB de Villiers, MS Dhoni (c &wk), Dwayne Bravo, Kieron Pollard, Sunil Narine, Lasith Malinga, Jasprit Bumrah