‘That was just a misunderstanding and the media made a big noise out of it’ - Sreesanth on relationship with Harbhajan Singh post slapgate

Both cricketers were part of India Maharajas in Legends League Cricket Masters.

Koustav Sengupta
Koustav Sengupta

Staff Writer

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It’s not just Brendon McCullum’s masterclass in the opening game or Sohail Tanvir’s brilliance throughout the tournament but cricket fans vividly remember the famous slapgate saga as well that shook the cricketing world in the inaugural edition of the Indian Premier League. The incident happened in the match between Kings XI Punjab (now Punjab Kings) and Mumbai Indians, when off-spinner Harbhajan Singh lost his calm and slapped Sreesanth after Mumbai lost the match.

The scuffle even led Bhajji, as he is popularly known, to get banned from the remainder of the season as former South Africa cricketer Shaun Pollock took the responsibility of leading Mumbai Indians. Since then, the 42-year-old has said multiple times that what he had done was wrong and if he had to correct one mistake in his life, it would be the slapgate incident.

Meanwhile, 16 years after the incident, former pacer Sreesanth has opened up and stated that there was a small misunderstanding that was blown out of proportion by the media. The Kerala-born cricketer also stated that he had always been friends with Harbhajan and had learned a lot of commentary tricks from the former cricketer.

“We have always been friends. That was just a misunderstanding and the media made a big noise out of it. I will just say that Bhajji pa has supported me from the beginning in every way, including recently with commentary tips. He has supported me and helped me a lot and I am very thankful to him. There is that song, 'Tere jaisa yaar kaha', that is my relationship with him,” Sreesanth said while talking to Sports Yaari.

Notably, both of them were part of the India Maharajas side that lost to Asia Lions on March 18 in the Eliminators of the Legends League Cricket Masters (LLC Masters). Overall, the team managed to win only one out of their five games in the tournament as skipper Gautam Gambhir promised to come back stronger in the next edition.

Asia Lions and World Giants to play LLC Masters final on March 20

World Giants topped the points table among the three teams to straight away qualify for the finals scheduled to be held on March 20. They defeated India Maharajas in their first game of the tournament by a close margin of 2 runs. They then endured a solitary loss against Asia Lions before going on to win their remaining two fixtures by 3 wickets and 20 runs, respectively.

Asia Lions, on the other hand, won two of their four matches, losing both their second-round fixtures to yield the top spot to World Giants.

Both World Giants and Asia Lions, led by Aaron Finch and Shahid Afridi respectively, will now meet for the summit clash on March 20 at the Asian Town Cricket Stadium in Doha.

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