Whenever we hear the term off-spinner, Harbhajan Singh’s name has to come into our mind. Harbhajan is one of the finest spinners to ever play the game. He was a fearless cricketer who paved his way to thrive in his cricketing journey with his rigorous hard work. In his 18 years of career, “The Turbanator” took more than 711 wickets across all formats. Singh has enjoyed many memorable moments throughout his career including the 2011 World Cup and the 2007 T20 World Cup. He used to bamboozle the batsmen with his unplayable doosra. In this article, we will let you know some interesting facts about Harbhajan Singh.
Interesting Facts About Harbhajan Singh
- Harbhajan Singh was born in a Sikh family on 3rd July 1980 in Jalandhar, Punjab. His father Sardar Sardev Singh Plaha had a ball bearing and valve factory. He wanted to handle his father’s business but his father insisted him to play cricket.
- Beginning his cricket procession as a batsman under the supervision of his first coach Chiranjit Singh Bhullar, Harbhajan went on to become an off-spinner after his mentor’s untimely death. His second coach Davinder Arora nourished him to be a good cricketer.
- His nicknames are “Bhajji” and “The Turbanator”. Former Indian wicket-keeper gave him the name “Bhajji ”, as it was tough for him to utter Harbhajan from behind the stump to cheer him up.
- At the age of 15, the spin magician got into the U-16 team of Punjab and grabbed 32 wickets in four matches in the all India U-16 tournament. His great performance rewarded him with a place in the North Zone team for a one-day series.
- Harbhajan Singh played his first domestic match in the 1997 Ranji Trophy season for Punjab against Services and bagged 3 wickets. Eventually, Singh ended his career with 780 wickets in 198 first-class matches.
- Being a part of the 1998 World Cup U-19 Indian team, he grabbed 8 wickets in 6 matches.
- Harbhajan had a decent start to his international career in 1998, taking 2/136 against Australia in Bangalore at the age of 18.
- As an off-spinner, Harbhajan Singh has 2nd most number of scalps, 417 wickets in 103 test matches.
- In the 50 over format, Harbhajan Singh made his debut in 1998 against New Zealand but managed to take 1 wicket with a commendable economy of 3.2.
- Harbhajan Singh’s most memorable performance was against Australia in 2001. He supported India to win the series at home by taking 32 wickets in three matches. In that series, Bhajji became the 1st Indian to take a hat-trick in the longest format of the game.
- Post-2001 Australia series, Punjab CM Prakash Badal offered him to join the Punjab Police as a DSP for his outstanding display of bowling in the series.
- Harbhajan is the youngest Indian to take 400 test wickets at the age of 31 years and 5 days.
- ICC banned Harbhajan Singh for racially abusing Andrew Symonds during a test in Sydney in 2008. Later the ICC Appeals Commissioner Justice John Hansen lifted the ban as there was no evidence of it and for the written request by senior players like Matthew Hayden, Sachin Tendulkar, Ricky Ponting, and Micheal Clarke.
- Mumbai Indians picked Harbhajan in the maiden IPL season for a handsome amount of $850000. He led Mumbai Indians to win the 2011 Champions League T20.
- In 2008 IPL, the Mumbai Indians in charge captain slapped Kings Xi Punjab pacer S Sreesanth for his aggressive send-off to the batsmen of Mumbai. The IPL match referee Farokh Engineer banned him for the rest of the IPL.
- Harbhajan Singh has won two major ICC tournaments with India- the 2011 World Cup and 2007 T20 World Cup. He bagged 9 and 7 wickets apiece in the competitions.
- The Government of India bestowed him the prestigious “Padma Shri” award in 2009.
- Harbhajan was pretty good with the bat also, he holds the record of being the first player to hit two back-to-back centuries in test batting at No 8, reached the milestone in the 2010 New Zealand home series.
- The ace spinner got married in 2015 with his longtime girlfriend Geeta Basra, who is an actress in Bollywood. Their daughter’s name is Hinaya Heer.
- Harbhajan is into business also. He owns a sports brand called “Bhajji Sports”.
- Singh used to wear jersey number 3.
- The former Indian off-spinner lives a lavish life. His estimated net worth is $9 million.
Harbhajan Singh’s Career Stats