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15 Aug 2020
It came to many as a shocker that only at the age of 33, middle order batsman and a handy bowler, Suresh Raina decided to quit international cricket. He made the decision minutes after the legendary Indian captain and his long time friend and guide, MS Dhoni had announced his retirement on 15 August.
Dravid, who had presented Raina with the ODI and Test caps congratulated him on an amazing career saying that he was the reason for a “A lot of success that India had in white-ball cricket and a lot of great moments and memories that India had over the last decade and a half.”
“I think his contribution in white-ball cricket has been fantastic,” said Dravid in a video posted by BCCI on its Twitter handle.
Appreciating the amount of energy Raina brought on the field and the way he always stayed on the pitch, present in all difficult situations, ‘The Wall' called him a true team man.
“One thing we always felt is that Suresh did all the difficult things. For the most part of his career, he batted lower down the order, fielded at difficult positions and bowled some handy overs and always brought a lot to the team,” the 47-year-old added.
Currently the Director of National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru, Dravid also feels that Raina could have scored more than he did, had he batted up the order. He cited the Chennai Super King's story as an example for that.
“Honestly his numbers could have been a lot better if he had batted higher up the order that has been shown in the success he had for CSK (Chennai Super Kings) in the IPL where he bats at no 3. He has been a phenomenal player for IPL,” Dravid concluded.
Raina indeed was a team man as he not only amassed almost 8000 international runs for the Blue Brigade playing 332 matches across formats, in a career that spanned around 13 years, but also picked up crucial 62 international wickets.
With 5368 runs in 193 matches, the Uttar Pradesh born is also all time second highest run scorer in the league, only behind India skipper Virat Kohli, who has 5412 runs in 177 matches.