Decided to stay back, says Anil Kumble on Monkeygate scandal
New Delhi/UNI: Former India skipper Anil Kumble recalls 2007-08 Australian tour when Monkeygate scandal happened during the Sydney Test and there was talks team wanting to leave the tour and come back, but the side decided to stay back and won the remaining matches under difficult circumstances.
Harbhajan Singh was banned by the ICC for three matches because of a racist remark against Andrew Symonds in Monkeygate scandal in 2008 Sydney Test.
India appealed against the decision and there was talks team wanting to come back.
However, Harbhajan survived a ban and was imposed 50 percent of his match fee.
"You know as a captain you're generally tuned to take decisions on the field. Here I was faced with something, which was off the field, to take a decision in the larger interest of the game," Kumble told R Ashwin in his YouTube show 'DRS with Ash'.
Kumble, is also the highest Test wicket-taker for India with 619 scalps from 132 matches, also made it clear that he felt Harbhajan was “wronged” by the decision of the ICC.
"We had to obviously be together as a team but the challenge was that there was a lot of talk about the team wanting to come back at that point in time, and leave the tour and come back. Yes, you know, probably [people] would have accepted that the Indian team was wronged and that's why they came back."
India managed to end the Test in a draw after suffering loss in the first and second Test, but won the third and deciding Test.
"I think as a captain, or as a team, we had gone there to win the series. Unfortunately, with the first two results not going our way, the best result could have been a drawn series because two more Test matches remained and I just wanted to rally around the team.
"We got around as a unit and then we sort of took a decision to continue and make sure that we go on and win the next couple of matches because that would be the best message that we can give back to our fans," Kumble added.