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Harbhajan calls into question Suresh Raina’s ‘school bunk’ anecdote

by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

Harbhajan Singh has called into question an anecdote about skipping school to watch Sachin Tendulkar bat, told by his former India teammate Suresh Raina, pointing out that the timings just don’t add up.

Speaking to Times of India, Raina said that he and his friends would “bunk the last two periods of school because the tournament in Sharjah was on”. The tournament in question was the Coca-Cola Cup, played between India, New Zealand, and Australia, and contained two of Sachin Tendulkar’s most famous knocks, both of which came against Australia.

Termed the ‘Desert Storm’ innings for both the whirwind nature of the performance and the weather phenomenon that interrupted the former game, the first, of 143 off 131 balls, helped India qualify for the final by virtue of net run rate, while the second, coming two days later on the Little Master’s birthday, of 134 off 131 balls, ensured India claimed the trophy. Speaking to Wisden Cricket Monthly, Virat Kohli picked the two as his favourite innings in cricket history.

For Raina, Tendulkar was the main attraction too. “We used to watch only Sachin batting, or Dravid’s; but once Sachin got out, we would leave for home,” he was quoted as saying in translation by Times of India.

However, Harbhajan, who also featured in the Coca-Cola Cup, responded to the article in a puzzled fashion. “School bunk,” he tweeted. “How? That game started at 4pm Indian time.”

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