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Saqlain Mushtaq feels Harbhajan Singh is not treated well by India

Saqlain Mushtaq speaks about Harbhajan Singh.

Harbhajan Singh during an Asia Cup training session with team in Bangladesh

The inventor of ‘doosra’ delivery and former Pakistan’s frontline bowler, Saqlain Mushtaq, feels that Harbhajan Singh not getting any chances to be in playing XI of India in the recent T20Is matches is not good for the bowler’s confidence.

Currently, team India is continuing with the in-form pair of R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja, who have cemented their places with their world class performance against the South African team last winter.

Mushtaq said that he feels sad about the fact how Harbhajan has been sidelined from the Indian cricket team.

"I am afraid that Indian cricket board and team management's treatment to Harbhajan has not been great. He was a world class bowler and is still a world class bowler. The emergence of Ashwin doesn't mean that you drop Harbhajan or put him under tremendous pressure," Saqlain said.

The right-arm off break spinner, Mushtaq, who has 208 Test and 288 ODI wickets, said dropping Harbhajan according to convenience is not good and wrong example is being set here.

"Look from the time he got dropped (in 2011), he has made three comebacks which meant that when you needed him, you picked him and when the need was over, you dumped him. So the pressure that you have created on him, you have already negated his past achievements.

"But what logically should have been done is that when his graph was going down, one should have given him a short break and brought him back. He should have been the first choice spinner supported by Ashwin. Instead, you put self-doubts in him and now made him the third or fourth choice spinner in the side," Saqlain said.

He added when a player is making a comeback, the management should put in confidence to bring back the player to his best rather than keeping him out on the bench.

"In my 10 years for Pakistan, I have seen legends being dropped due to form or injury and after they came back, in first 2 or 3 matches, their confidence looked to have been shaken. But after five or six matches, their rhythm came back.

"Let me be very clear, even if Bhajji has 100 per cent potential, he will not be able to perform because you people have made him feel like a No 4. At the end, players are only human with same kind of feelings and emotions. A good performance is emotion driven. If you are in a good space mentally, your graph will go up and vice versa," Saqlain concluded.

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