On August 15, Suresh Raina shocked the cricketing fraternity by following the footsteps of his close friend and former India captain MS Dhoni to bid farewell to international cricket.
While for Dhoni, considering his age, the retirement was at least fathomable for the fans. But, in case of Raina, it did raise a few eyebrows as many thought that he has few more years of cricket left in him.
Former India cricketer Aakash Chopra too echoed the same sentiment as he remarked that Raina should overturn his decision and strive to make a comeback for Team India, just like Shahid Afridi did for Pakistan.
“Of course, Suresh Raina could have played a lot more, he had no need to retire. Now he is 33 years old and yes there were some injury issues but which player does not have injury issues? And now after surgery, he was fitter, stronger and better and in my thinking, he was itching to be back on the field,” said the cricketer-turned commentator on his YouTube show.
Chopra further remarked that Dhoni’s decision is understood since the latter was eyeing to retire after the 2020 T20 World Cup which was originally scheduled to be held this year itself. But, the outbreak of coronavirus postponed the mega-event to 2021, forcing the former skipper to announce his retirement.
“You can understand Dhoni’s case as if the IPL has taken place in April-May, the T20 World Cup would have taken place in October-November and maybe Dhoni would have been available for it. But maybe, it’s postponement is the main reason why Dhoni retired.”
“But Raina had no such problems to be very honest. I would say please do a Shahid Afridi and come out of retirement. I believe that a couple of brilliant IPL 2020 and 2021 seasons can well see Raina in India’s T20 World Cup squad,” Chopra concluded.