Suresh Raina’s career with Team India has not panned out as widely expected. One of the most integral parts of the limited-overs team not long ago, the Uttar Pradesh star is now not even in the frame. The left-handed batsman, who was a part of the 2011 World Cup-winning squad, has not played in One-Day International since October 2015 when he was dropped after a string of poor performances.
He was recalled for the ODI series against New Zealand in 2016 but did not play a single game due to illness. That incident pretty much derailed his ODI career. A recall for the T20 series against England in 2017 gave him a glimmer of hope and he fully capitalized on it by finishing the three-match series as its third highest run-scorer with 104 runs. A few months later, he proved his worth with yet another impressive IPL season, scoring 442 runs in 14 matches which led to his inclusion in the standby list for the Champions Trophy. It was a big sign that the southpaw was very much in contention for a recall from the selectors.
Raina last played an ODI in October 2015 (Credits: BCCI)
However, the selectors proved everyone wrong by not recalling Raina for any more series in 2017. He finally returned to the team for the T20I series in South Africa this year. And although he did not score big, he played some handy knocks. But amidst all, his ODI career was plummeting deeper and deeper. He finally broke into the Indian ODI side with a slice of luck.
The selectors handed him a lifeline by naming him as Ambati Rayudu’s replacement for the England series after the former failed to clear the yo-yo test. However, Raina just could not grab the opportunities. He managed to score just 47 runs in the three-match series and was immediately dropped. He is yet to receive a recall from the ODI team or the T20I team and with Rayudu doing extremely well in ODIs and the likes of Rishabh Pant and Dinesh Karthik impressing in T20Is, Raina’s hopes of returning to the team looks as good as over now.
The selectors recently announced the T20I and ODI squads for the series in Australia and New Zealand. With the World Cup not very far, it looks highly unlikely that the team-management will experiment anymore. So far the time being, Raina’s chances of returning to the team looks all but over.
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