5 Indians with the longest gap between two ODI appearances
After 992 days, Suresh Raina returned to the Indian ODI squad, with his eyes firmly set on the World Cup next year. His previous appearance for the Indian team in ODIs was under MS Dhoni in 2015, when South Africa visited the subcontinent.
The 2 year, 8-month hiatus highlights how the selectors do not mind bringing older legs back into the fold, as experience will matter on these very wickets when India plays the World Cup next year.
While Raina has been in and out of the T20I setup, even when he was away from the ODI squad, his inclusion to the 50-over squad is a massive boost to his career that seemed to have floundered with his exclusion from a format that he was a constant feature in for a long time.
However, his absence for close to three years isn't as long as those of other Indian players, who were left in the wilderness for a longer duration. Here are five players with the longest absence between two ODIs.
#5 Sairaj Bahutule (5 years, 294 days)
While Sairaj Bahutule might not be a name that is synonymous with followers of Indian cricket today, he was a known figure in the domestic cricket circles in the 1990s and 2000s. The leg-spinner, who also used to bat lower down the order, had a stop-start Indian career, playing eight ODIs and two Tests for the nation between 1997 and 2003.
His ODI career had a huge gap of nearly six years - his penultimate and final ODI for India was played across two millenniums. After representing India in the Independence Cup in January 1998, Bahutule was left in the wilderness for close to six years, before returning to play one more game, his final one, in late 2003, against New Zealand in Cuttack.
He retired in 2013 from first-class cricket and was recently seen in the Rajasthan Royals setup as the bowling coach during the 2018 IPL.