Harbhajan Singh extended his support to an under-fire Virat Kohli. © AFP
India captain Virat Kohli is facing the heat over his debatable selection policy for the first two Tests against South Africa, which they lost comprehensively. Chasing two sub-300 targets — 208 at Cape Town and 287 at Centurion — India’s famed batting line-up failed to perform as they crumbled down against a fiery South African pace attack. However, India cricketer Harbhajan Singh on Friday extended his support to the under-fire Kohli and urged everyone to support the team as this is a learning curve for the players. He further went on to add that the pressure is always there as this is Kohli’s first ‘real overseas tour’ as the captain.
“Everybody wants to improve. Let’s support the team at this hour. We have not played as well as we would have expected. Maybe next time. This is a great learning curve. Hopefully, we will bounce back strongly. They need to back each other,” Harbhajan told PTI.
Asked to compare Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Kohli’s style of captaincy, Harbhajan refused to compare saying he doesn’t want to compare teams of different eras.
“I don’t want to compare. They played in different eras. Every time we toured we had the best chance of winning. I don’t want to compare teams of different eras. Kohli with Dhoni or the former players like Rahul Dravid, VVS and Sachin.
“Captaincy comes with a lot of responsibility. He has done really well so far. This was his first real overseas challenge. I don’t call Sri Lanka a real overseas challenge with similar conditions (like India).”
Kohli was also awarded the ICC Cricketer of the Year and also bagged the top honours in ODIs.
“Kohli has been setting very high standards. I’m very happy to see him at the top of this game.”
India have already lost the three-match Test series but will be looking to win the third and final Test at Johannesburg from January 24.