Suresh Raina cleared the air over people misjudging him for being in the team because of his closeness with MS Dhoni. Suresh Raina, at one point in his career, was an indispensable member of the Indian team due to his ability to accelerate and score crucial runs in the hour of need.
The former middle-order batsman would come to bat at number four and five and score important runs for the team either in the tense run-chases or provide finishing touches to an innings.
Suresh Raina Said MS Dhoni Knew How To Get The Best Performance Out Of Him
Apart from being a good batsman, Suresh Raina was exceptional on the field too often patrolling the point and cover regions with his brilliant acrobatic fielding saving run at crucial junctures and affecting run-outs. The Uttar Pradesh-born Suresh Raina was India’s designated finisher along with former India skipper MS Dhoni. Suresh Raina was a part-time right-arm off-break spinner too and picked crucial wickets at much-needed intervals.
While there was no question regarding his ability to perform under any given circumstances, there was though a constant criticism on the former southpaw that he was there in the team just because of MS Dhoni’s backing. Now the former middle-order batter opened up about the same in his autobiography ‘Believe’ and spoke in length about his rapport with his Chennai Super Kings (CSK) skipper.
“Dhoni knew how to get the best performance out of me, and I trusted him,” Raina wrote in his autobiography, praising Dhoni. “When people equate our connection with a spot for me in the Indian team, it hurts a lot. I’ve always worked hard to win my spot in Team India, just as I’ve earned Dhoni’s faith and respect,” Suresh Raina added, as reported by Cricketnext.
The 39-year-old wicketkeeper-batsman MS Dhoni is India’s most successful captain winning the 2011 World Cup final win on home soil and also guided them to victory in the inaugural T20 World Cup final in 2007 and the Champions Trophy 2013. He last played in the 2019 World Cup, where he was run out, much like in his debut match in 2004.
Suresh Raina Still A Vital Cog In CSK’s Team
While Suresh Raina made his international debut on 30th July 2005 against Sri Lanka, MS Dhoni made his debut against Bangladesh in the year 2004. The duo, over the years, has developed a great bonding due to trust and respect for each other. When MS Dhoni was announced Team India’s all-format captain, he made one thing clear that he wanted good fielders in the team. The former southpaw was one of the integral members of the Indian team under MS Dhoni’s leadership.
Suresh Raina was also pivotal in CSK’s dominance for close to 10 years with his street-smart and risk-free batting. Often coming in at number three, the southpaw would take the games away from the opposition. He has so far scored 5,491 runs in 195 innings(200 games) for CSK and Gujarat Lions averaging 33.07 and is 3rd highest run-scorer in IPL history. He managed 123 runs in 7 games in IPL 2021.
A couple of senior CSK players – Suresh Raina and Harbhajan Singh (now with KKR) – had pulled out of the tournament in IPL 2020 citing personal reasons. Their absence, especially, Suresh Raina not being with the team affected CSK’s batting a big-time which resulted in CSK not reaching the playoffs for the first time in the IPL history.
Suresh Raina had retired from international cricket on August 15, 2020. The former India batsman followed MS Dhoni, who had quit the international cricket just a few minutes before him.