Harbhajan Singh entered his name in the cricket folklore with his historic performance against the all-conquering Australia in the Eden Gardens Test of 2001. It was that historic game that saw Harbhajan Singh becoming the first Indian bowler to take a Test hat-trick. India had their back against the wall after losing the first game of the series and suffering a batting collapse in the first innings.
Having won their last 16 Tests, Australia were on a roll and were looking destined to win the Kolkata Test too. Batting first, Australia started in a solid fashion with Michael Slater and Matthew Hayden putting on 103. Justin Langer then helped Hayden add another 90. Australia were firmly on top when Harbhajan Singh came on to bowl the 72nd over of the match. With the scoreboard reading 252 for 4, the day belonged to Australia till that time.
By the time, Harbhajan finished his over, Australia were reeling at 252 for 7. The veteran spinner had taken a sensational hat-trick with his victims being Ricky Ponting, Adam Gilchrist and Shane Warne. Well, Gilchrist has perhaps still not made peace with his dismissal and he recently made it clear on Twitter.
Gilchrist, who was Harbhajan’s second victim, thinks it wouldn’t have been successful if there was DRS in that Test match. Gilchrist made his feelings clear when a fan posted a clip of Harbhajan’s hat-trick on Twitter and tagged the legendary Australian.
In 2001,Historic Kolkata Test, Bhajji takes a Hattrick V Steve Waugh's Invincible Aus Team. @harbhajan_singh became the 1st Indian to take a Test
Third- @ShaneWarne √#GillyKingPair Hard to believe!
— Piyush Glystar (@piyushgilly) August 28, 2019
The replays did show that Gilchrist had inside-edged the ball which the umpire had missed. But unlike the present days, Gilchrist did not have the luxury of reviewing the decision and he had to walk off. Reacting to the video of that hat-trick, Gilchrist wrote: “No DRS”
No DRS 😩 https://t.co/3XsCqk9ZiR
— Adam Gilchrist (@gilly381) August 31, 2019
When India stunned Australia
India, meanwhile, had gone on to stun Australia in that match. Australia had recovered from Harbhajan Singh’s hat-trick to post 445 thanks to a century from their skipper Steve Waugh. In reply, India were all out for just 171 and were asked to follow-on. Waugh opted to send the hosts back in to bat early on day three after his team took a 274-run lead. But the decision eventually turned out to be a mistake.
Riding on a double century from VVS Laxman and a century from Rahul Dravid, India declared on a mammoth 657 for 7. India then bowled out Australia for 212 to win the game by 171 runs.
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