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We won't take shit, will give back to intimidatory tactics: Bhajji

Sydney, Dec 17 (UNI) Indian off-spinner Harbhajan Singh has promised to give back in kind if the Australians resorted to intimidatory tactics in the four-Test series starting on December 26 in Melbourne.

''I don't care what the reception is going to be like. I'm here to play, not talk. It's about what goes on between bat and ball, and if they say this or that, it's OK. There was probably a bit too much of it early on in the last one-day series (in India),'' he said.

''They lost the semi-final of the Twenty20 and they were obviously hurting and wanted to prove the point that they were the better team.

''But we're not just going to take it. If somebody gives it to us, we will give it back. We're coming to play cricket, not to take shit,'' Harbhajan told The Sydney Morning Herald.

''We respect their team and the kind of cricket they play, but we don't fear them,'' added Harbhajan who had accused Ricky Ponting's men as arrogant and vulgar when the Aussies toured India in Sepember-October for a seven-match ODI series.

Recalling that India drew 1-1 in their last visit Down Under, Harbhajan said his side has the quality in batting and bowling and if they stick together they can give the Australians a good fight.

''We did well here last time, and we're confident we can do well again. Obviously we're all feeling pretty confident after the Pakistan series and we're looking forward to the tour of Australia,'' said Harbhajan, who left the Indian shores today for the gruelling 11-week tour.

The 'turbanator' also derided Australia's spin-bowling stocks and predicted his side's veteran batsmen would gorge on the bowling of Brad Hogg should the West Australian be selected for the Boxing Day Test.

''Without (Shane) Warne and (Stuart) MacGill, there are no quality spinners in Australia. From our point of view, we would be happy to see how Hogg would go against the best players of spin in the world.

It would be a big test for him, and we all know how he bowls.

''He is not close to the class of Warne and MacGill. If they play Hoggy, I will wish him all the best because I have nothing against him, but I would be happy to see him bowl at our batsmen. If you look at our line-up, we have players like Sourav, VVS, Sachin and Rahul.

They're all great players of spin.'' Harbhajan also felt Hogg could struggle to make the transition to Test cricket after a four-year absence.

''One-day and Test bowling are very different for a spinner.

There would be a lot of pressure on Hogg.'' After the fourth and final Test in Adelaide (January 24-28), India and Australia will play a Twenty20 International match on February 1 and will be joined by Sri Lanka for a limited overs tri-series from February 3 to March 7.


Story first published: Monday, December 17, 2007, 11:35 [IST]
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