‘Wanted to finish that over’- Harbhajan Singh on Misbah-ul-Haq hitting three sixes off his bowling in the 2007 T20 World Cup final
Misbah took 19 runs off the 17th over, bringing Pakistan right back into the contest.
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India indeed won the 2007 T20 World Cup final against Pakistan in Johannesburg. However, Harbhajan Singh didn’t have the best of days. He didn’t even complete his quota, leaking 36 runs in the three overs he bowled. It could be one of the reasons why the then skipper MS Dhoni went for the inexperienced Joginder Sharma to bowl the last over ahead of the Punjab off-spinner.
In the last four overs, the Men in Green needed 54 runs and Misbah-ul-Haq took 19 runs off the 17th over, reducing the target to 35 off 18. Misbah smashed the tweaker for three sixes and brought Pakistan back into the match at the Wanderers. Going down the memory lane, Harbhajan said that all he wanted to do was complete the over.
I just wanted to bowl the quicker delivery: Harbhajan Singh
“Because after I was hit for a six, the pressure kept increasing. Rather than thinking what to do next, I was rushing through my deliveries. I wanted to just finish that over and feel, Chalo, ho gaya mera [I’ve finished my job],” Harbhajan was quoted as saying in an interview with ESPNcricinfo’s Cricket Monthly.
Harbhajan Singh started the over with the wide down the leg-side after which Misbah laid into him. The latter peppered the leg-side boundary, putting pressure on the offie. Singh tried to spear the ball in only to get clobbered. He said that he went for the tactic as it worked against Australia in the semis.
“Take that over where Misbah [-ul-Haq] went after me. Okay, anybody can be hit for a six or two sixes or three sixes, but was my process correct? Many times, we [bowlers] are ourselves so scared about being hit, we send the batsman the message that we are on the back foot,” he stated.
“So, against Misbah I just wanted to bowl the quicker delivery and the yorker. Because in the semi-final, against Australia, I bowled six yorkers and it worked,” he added.
In the end, the over didn’t prove costly as Misbah got out to Sharma, trying to scoop the ball over the fine leg region. Misbah managed 43 off 38 with four sixes, but his efforts went in vain.