Jalandhar:Star spinner Harbhajan Singh rubbished reports that India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and his deputy Virender Sehwag had a tiff over Amit Mishra's exclusion from the Mirpur Test against Bangladesh.
"There was cool atmosphere in the dressing room during the Bangladesh tour and it is only after coming back to India that we read reports about alleged rift between Dhoni and Sehwag whereas it was never noticed by any teammate," Harbhajan told PTI.
Earlier, media reports claimed Mishra's exclusion from the second Test in Mirpur, despite his sterling performance in the previous match in Chittagong, led to arguments between Sehwag and Dhoni.
Sehwag led the side in Chittagong in absence of Dhoni who missed the match with back spasm.
Harbhajan too sat out with a stiff neck and substituting him, Mishra grabbed the opportunity with both hands, claiming seven wickets and notching up his maiden Test fifty in the series opener.
Harbhajan recovered in time to play the second Test in Mirpur but Pragyan Ojha was preferred to Mishra as second spinner.
Harbhajan said such reports could disturb the team and media should refrain from speculations.
The off-spinner was tight-lipped about the controversy surrounding the Pakistani players' exclusion from the Indian Premier League but exuded confidence of doing well against South Africa to protect the number one status in Test cricket.
"I am sure if we will play up to our potential, we will definitely win," Harbhajan said.
"No doubt South Africa is in goof form but playing at home will definitely provide us an edge and India is ready to tackle any challenge," Harbhajan said.
"It is must for Indian team to win the upcoming series to maintain its status of number one team," he said, conceding injuries to Rahul Dravid and Yuvraj Singh would affect the home side in the two-match series starting February 6.
Harbhajan witnessed the final match of the tournament played in the memory of his late father Sardev Singh.
"It is my wish to upgrade the Sardev Memorial Tournament to national level for which I will talk to the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA)," he said.
Winner of the tournament was given Rs One lakh, while the runners-up side got Rs 50,000.