Harbhajan backs Hayden's return to form

Harbhajan Singh and Matthew Hayden seemed to have turned mutual admirers post "obnoxious weed" episode.

updated: October 26, 2008 07:54 IST
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Harbhajan Singh and Matthew Hayden seemed to have turned mutual admirers post "obnoxious weed" episode with the Australian opener praising the "exceptional" on-field conduct of his rival while the Indian offie backing his 'bunny's' return to form in next two Tests.

Harbhajan, now Hayden's most frequent destroyer in Test cricket by dismissing him for the eighth time at Mohali, said he has patched up with his greatest rival and the Australian opener was not a fading force.

"He (Hayden) is a class player and I have great respect for him as a batsman. We met up during the IPL and from then on we have been two normal cricketers. We will both have good days and bad days and it is just a matter of time for him," Harbhajan was quoted as saying by 'The Age'.

"We don't want him to get going because when he gets a score, we know he can get big runs, so it is important we get early wickets. He is a proven player who performs in every series for Australia," he said of his rival who has scored just 42 in the four innings of the ongoing series.

Hayden returned the compliments by saying that Harbhajan has shown "exceptional" conduct in the series.

"For me, someone like Harbhajan has been exceptional in this trip. I think he has been passionate without being overboard at all," said the Australian.

Hayden would not also mind Harbhajan's wild celebrations after trapping him lbw in Australia's second innings at Mohali.

"Why wouldn't he? If I was bowling I would be doing exactly the same thing. I am planning on doing the same thing. I harbour no resentment or hard feelings at all about anyone on the Indian side. It's good competitive, hard cricket," Hayden told 'Herald Sun'.