Vibrant, electric and match-winning, he was on his day. Now the mercurial Suresh Raina too has decided to bid adieu to international cricket along with his friend and mentor, M.S. Dhoni.
In his Instagram post he wrote, “It was nothing but lovely playing with you, @mahi7781 . With my heart full of pride, I choose to join you in this journey. Thank you India. Jai Hind!.”
The 33-year-old dasher from the dusty lanes of Ghaziabad was among India’s finest in the shorter versions with his dare, flair and a penchant for opening up the field.
left-hander with his bat-speed and footwork made 5615 runs in 226 ODIs at a stunning strike-rate of 93.50. And Raina played his role in India’s triumphant World Cup campaign in 2011 with a delightful cameo against Australia in the quarterfinals at Ahmedabad.
Soon, he led India in the shorter formats on the tour of the Caribbean in 2011. Those were his glory days.
And in Twenty20 cricket, he was a formidable force; Raina’s exceptional fielding and steady off-spin added to his immense value. In 78 T20Is, Raina notched up 1605 runs at a sizzling strike-rate of 134.87. Among former Indian coach Greg Chappell’s favourites, he could change gears with ease.
Raina began his Test career with a fighting 120 against Sri Lanka in 2010 in Colombo. He had a secure defence and a flurry of shots. However, a technical flaw against short-pitched stuff saw his Test career being limited to 768 runs in 18 Tests at 26.48.
When it came to shorter formats, Raina was a bold Indian force.
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