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Harbhajan Singh thanked the almighty a few times during his post-match interview, but the off-spinner might as well have muttered a vote of thanks to the English batsmen. Playing international cricket after a year, Harbhajan starred on his comeback with a four over uninterrupted spell that read 4-2-12-4 in a 90-run thrashing of the defending champion.
Harbhajan bowled off a shorter run up and kept things tight, but was helped by the English batsmen's inability to play spin with confidence. Piyush Chawla, in for Zaheer Khan, also troubled the batsmen, ending with two for 13 as England crashed to their heaviest T20 defeat.
Before the match, MS Dhoni had admitted he would use the game to try a few things out and true to his word, made three changes to his line-up, bringing in Harbhajan, Chawla and Ashok Dinda. Zaheer Khan, Virender Sehwag and Ravichandran Ashwin sat out as India went in with five bowlers.
English captain Stuart Broad though, had promised to take the inconsequential match seriously, but instead were bowled out for 80 and lost by 90 runs.
Though the outcome was disastrous, England were in contention until the spinners came on. India had made 170 on the back of good knocks from Gautam Gambhir, Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, and though Irfan Pathan picked up two early wickets, Craig Kieswetter made an attacking start as England went into the final over of the Powerplay at 39 for two.
Mixed up well
Harbhajan came on to bowl the sixth over and off his second ball, foxed Eion Morgan with a slider. Harbhajan was pumped and England looked all the more unsure after the blow. Harbhajan didn't bowl the standard off-breaks often and relied more on mixing his doosra with the straighter and the arm ball.