Sunil Gavaskar defended Board of Control for Cricket in India's selection of Harbhajan Singh for the upcoming series against England, saying the veteran spinner has proven his ability to perform despite a rather tame Ranji outing.
Speaking to NDTV on Monday, the former India batsman said that Harbhajan has over 400 wickets and it justifies his inclusion in the side. "In the case of proven performers and someone who has plus 400 wickets, I do not think Ranji performance is important as long as the selection committee believes he has been bowling well," he said.
Saying that it is similar to how a proven batsman with thousands of runs in Test cricket is still capable of making it to the national side despite not performing in a Ranji game, Gavaskar did mention that stringent fitness tests are required for some others.
Speaking about Zaheer in particular, Gavaskar said that with over a week for the series to begin, certain stringent tests can be for him a few days before. "He should bowl at full speed, runs up and if he doesn't do that on the 13th November, then they (selectors) should be looking at somebody else."
The opening Test starts November 15 in Ahmedabad.