India cricketer Harbhajan Singh believes that Sri Lanka series at home served little purpose and the Indian cricket team hardly gained anything out of it. After India's poor performance against mighty South Africa, questions were raised about India's preparation for the tour and Harbhajan, ahead of the third Test, said that a few players could've have gone to South Africa earlier and get acclimatised to the conditions. India are trailing 0-2 in the three-match Test series and are staring at a series whitewash.
The senior Indian off-spinner further added that Dharamsala could've been a great place for preparation because of its higher altitude.
"Look I believe the last Sri Lanka series at home served little purpose. We hardly gained anything out of it. Rather a few players could have gone to South Africa early. If not Dharamsala could have been a great place for preparation," Harbhajan told PTI.
"Its high altitude, cooler weather, seam movement along with bounce would have given them ideal preparation before a tough assignment like South Africa."
There has been a raging debate about Ajinkya Rahane's omission from the first two Tests but Harbhajan feels that there is no guarantee that things would have been different if Rahane had played.
"I was checking a few stats. Under Virat, Ajinkya's average is less than 40 over 30 Tests. Also last one year he didn't score that many runs.
"What if Ajinkya played and India were down 0-2, then would we have said that please bring Rohit. One needs to understand the captain's point of view also," the 'Turbanator' opined.
However, he feels while Rahane omission was a 50-50 call, Bhuvneshwar Kumar should have played.
"Bhuvi is a bigger match-winner in today's date compared to Ishant Sharma. Whenever Bhuvi has performed, India have done well. I still believe all is not lost. We can bounce back and make it 2-1 in Johannesburg," he observed.
"My advice to the team would be to remain positive. There is nothing to lose and everything to gain. So we should go for it," he concluded.
(With PTI Inputs)