Harbhajan Singh, Andrew Symonds
Harbhajan Singh, Andrew Symonds (Image: Twitter)

Former England left-arm spinner Monty Panesar revealed that former Indian spinner Harbhajan Singh was a huge inspiration for him in his early days. Harbhajan Singh drew curtains on his 23-year-long international career on Friday and will go down as one of the best spinners India has produced.

Monty Panesar himself was the first Indian-origin Sikh cricketer to play for England and was inspired by the way Harbhajan Singh played on the ground wearing a patka (Turban). Speaking to ANI, here is what Monty Panesar had to say:

Monty Panesar
Monty Panesar (Image Credit: Twitter)

“He is one of the great spinners I have always admired and even when I was a youngster. You look up to someone as a youngster who looks like you, who is a spinner, who wears a patka, plays for India and I thought, maybe, I can do the same. He was a huge inspiration for me.”

People will remember Harbhajan Singh for the 2001 Test series: Monty Panesar

Harbhajan Singh and Sourav Ganguly from 2001 home series vs Australia. Photo- Getty
Harbhajan Singh and Sourav Ganguly from 2001 home series vs Australia. Photo- Getty

Harbhajan Singh made his way into Test cricket as a successful off-spinner for the first time in the 2001 Test series against Australia. He also became the first Indian bowler to take a Test hat-trick and kind of stamped his authority on world cricket as one of the top off-spinners.

Monty Panesar feels that the 2001 series where India came from behind to beat Australia 2-1 will always be remembered as a series where Harbhajan had a maximum impact.

“It is great to see Indian ‘Turbanator’ have such a successful career. I think people are going to remember him for the 2001 Test series against Australia which was sort of his introduction to international cricket and it was a phenomenal series. He is one of the most successful bowlers in all formats for India among spinners,” Monty Pansear concluded.

Harbhajan Singh played 367 international games and picked up 711 wickets. His last international game came against UAE in the 2016 Asia Cup.