I have been talking to different people, improving my game, says Suresh Raina

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I have been talking to different people, improving my game, says Suresh Raina

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SportsCafe Desk

09/02/2017

India discard Suresh Raina has stated that he has been trying to get his spot back in the Indian squad by improving his style of play and taking advises of different people for the same. Further, the southpaw has also added the 2019 ICC World Cup is too far ahead and he likes to stay in the present.

The last time Raina had played for India was in the T20I series against England, back in February. He had hit 63 runs in Bangalore and later went on to have a decent IPL where he managed to score 422 runs in 14 matches for Gujarat Lions. He was widely expected to earn a recall when India's squads for the ongoing five-match one-day series and the one-off T20 against Sri Lanka were announced. However, the UP skipper missed the cut with the likes of Kedar Jadhav and Manish Pandey getting the nod ahead of him.

The 30-year-old, though, doesn't want to show any disappointment over his absence from the Indian set-up and is confident that his time under the sun will come sooner than later. Although making a comeback to the squad is on his mind these days, he wants to do it the hard way, with his performance. 

“I want to use the stairs, not the elevator,” said Raina.

The all-rounder has been a game changer in the shorter game formats and has 5,568 runs from 223 ODIs at 35.46 (strike rate 93.76) and 1,307 runs from 65 T20I at 29.70 (132.96) to his name. Being a middle order player, he has made a considerable impact and has also performed exceptionally well in the IPL as no one has scored more than Raina’s 4,540 in the tournament.

However, his inadequacy against short-pitched bowling from the quicks has been talked about time and again and many experts believe that his Test career failed to take off for that reason. 

“If I was really weak against the short-pitched stuff, I would have been targeted in the ODIs too. How is it that I have played over 200 ODIs in different parts of the world. I have been talking to different people, improving my game,” the 30-year-old said.

In the ongoing ODI series against Sri Lanka, Dhoni has been brilliant as the wicketkeeper-batsman and has played three reliable innings in the last four games of 45, 67 and 49, remaining unbeaten. Not only he has been a support with the bat, but his intelligence from behind the stumps remains at its peak too. India got a glimpse of his impeccable DRS call as he got rid of a high-flying Niroshan Dickwella.

On being asked about the future of MS Dhoni in the squad, Raina, Dhoni's long-standing India and former Chennai Super Kings teammate, responded by saying that he is hard to combat.

“He has been solid with the bat, keeping well and really contributing to the team. He and Kohli are similar characters, tough and hard to put down,” he said.

About the 2019 World Cup, the southpaw said, “I don’t want to look at the past or see too far ahead. It’s all about the present.”

Raina is pleased with the return of the CSK into the IPL fold and stated that his comeback into the franchise depends on factors which are not in his hands. He also talks about Chennai and how he considers the southern state his second home. Raina is familiar with the culture and has a great bonding with the ground staff at the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium.

"I would love to come back to CSK and play under Dhoni again. Coming back to Chennai and meeting all the groundsmen, I am getting all the fond memories back," he said.

“I remember so many things here with the Indian team and the Chennai Super Kings,” said the all rounder.

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