Ace spinner Harbhajan Singh on Friday lashed out at Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul for their sexist comments on women on a TV show, saying they have put the reputations of cricketers at stake.
Harbhajan even went on to say that he won’t be comfortable having Pandya and Rahul around his wife and daughter. “I will not travel with these two guys in the bus if my daughter of my wife are travelling in the team bus. How would they feel? You are looking at women in only one angle and that is not right,” Harbhajan told India Today.
“We don’t talk about all this even with our friends and they were talking on public television. Now people might think was Harbhajan Singh like this, was Anil Kumble like this and was Sachin Tendulkar…” Harbhajan added.
“Pandya has been in the team for how long to talk of the team culture in the manner he did,” Harbhajan said.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) said the pair would be stopped “from playing any form of cricket” after their comments on a TV show.
“I think this is the way to go,” the 38-year-old responded when asked about the suspension.
“The BCCI did the right thing, and this is also the way forward. This was expected and I am not surprised,” the off-spinner, who has over 400 Test wickets, said.
The duo appeared on Koffee With Karan where their comments – Pandya’s in particular – came in for widespread criticism and raised concerns over the team culture.
On the show, Pandya had boasted about hooking up with multiple women and being open about it with his parents. Rahul was, however, a little more restrained in his responses on relationships and women.
When asked by the host Karan Johar if they had “done it in teammates’ rooms,” both Pandya and Rahul responded in the positive.
The under-fire players have been suspended pending an inquiry into their sexist comments, ruling them out of the three-match ODI series against Australia beginning Saturday in Sydney.