India have recalled Harbhajan Singh to their squad for the first two Tests against England. The off-spinner has not played at the highest level since August 2011 but, after dismantling England in the World T20 in September, he has been brought back into the 15-man India party for the four-match series, which starts on 15 November in Ahmedabad.
Harbhajan has been in the Test wilderness for some time, perhaps because his last appearance came during India's dismal 4-0 series defeat in England in 2011. But the new India selection panel, headed by Sandeep Patil, has recalled Harbhajan as well as Yuvraj Singh, as predicted in The Independent last week.
The decision owes much to Harbhajan's success against England in September during the World T20 in Colombo – he took 4 for 12 in four overs as England were bowled out for 80 and beaten by 90 runs. Last winter England were clueless against Pakistan's off-spinner Saeed Ajmal, so India will be hoping for more of the same. Harbhajan is one of three spinners in the squad, along with Ravi Ashwin and Pragyan Ojha.
But Harbhajan has not started his domestic season too well and the former India batsman Sanjay Manjrekar said he was "extremely fortunate" to be back.Reuse content