Senior India batsman Suresh Raina responded to Yuvraj Singh’s remarks on him being MS Dhoni’s ‘favourite player’ during the 2011 World Cup, saying the former captain supported him because of his talent.
Suresh Raina said he is thankful to MS Dhoni for backing him and that he has always repaid the faith shown in him at Team India set-up as well as Chennai Super Kings.
Suresh Raina’s comments came after Yuvraj Singh told Sports Tak that Suresh Raina got a lot of backing from MS Dhoni, especially during the 2011 World Cup. Yuvraj said Raina ‘was not in good touch’ when Dhoni had faced a selection dilemma when it came to picking all-rounders in the playing XI.
“I would say MS (Dhoni) definitely supported me, he supported me because he knew I have talent, I’ve done it for him, CSK and Team India, whenever he supported me,” Raina told during an interaction for FanCode.
“The best part about him is that he will tell you after two games, ‘If you don’t score, I’ve to take a big step.’ I said just give me one or two games, I will make sure not to repeat mistakes.
“I am thankful to MS because he’s always been my great admirer and he always knew what sort of talent I have. I think it’s all destiny. He’s the greatest captain we had after Dada (Sourav Ganguly), so I think we should really enjoy things when we play the World Cup.
“God has been kind in all difficult situations, it’s difficult to say now that I got less or more chances, I am happy that I was part of that World Cup, he supported me, I delivered, so I think I can’t ask for more.”
Suresh Raina, who has represented India in 226 ODIs, went on to play crucial knocks in the semi-final against Pakistan and the quarter-final against Australia at the 2011 World Cup. In fact, Raina and Yuvraj stitched a match-winning stand of 74 runs in chase of 261 against the Ricky Ponting-led Australia side.
Raina played 153 ODIs under Dhoni’s captaincy and scored 4362 runs at close to 40.