Harbhajan Singh, the veteran spinner, has weighed in on the wicketkeeping debate ahead of India’s two-match Test series against South Africa, suggesting KL Rahul over Ishan Kishan if the team management has to make a choice.
Expressing his preference, Harbhajan emphasized, “I want to see KL Rahul keep wickets in South Africa… If I had to choose one, I would go with Rahul.”
In an interview with Sports Tak, he acknowledged Rahul’s adaptability despite potentially lacking a strong interest in wicketkeeping.
The red-ball contest between India and South Africa is scheduled to commence at SuperSport Park in Centurion on December 26. Ahead of the Test series, both teams will engage in three T20Is and as many ODIs.
In his assessment of India’s chances, Harbhajan emphasized the significance of India’s batting prowess, stressing the need to post substantial scores to secure victory in South Africa. He highlighted the formidable pace attack with Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, and Mohammed Siraj but questioned the absence of Umesh Yadav in the squad.
With India yet to secure a Test series win in South Africa, Harbhajan sees this as a golden opportunity, asserting, “If we manage to bat well on those pitches, this is our best chance to win in South Africa because our bowling is very good.”
Reflecting on the historical record between the two sides in South Africa, he noted the host’s dominance, winning seven out of eight Test series, while the 2010-11 series culminated in a 1-1 draw.
For success in the upcoming series, Harbhajan emphasized the need for India to set a benchmark by scoring a minimum of 350 runs in the first innings, aligning with his belief that a robust batting performance is crucial for India’s victory on South African soil.