Suresh Raina - 6 Top notch knocks in ODIs
November 27, 1986 - It is a special day to remember as one of India's most reliable middle-order batsman in the 21st decade, was born on this day. It marks the birth of Suresh Kumar Raina, a player who went on to play crucial knocks at crunch moments for the country at the highest level. 'Underrated' is a word that you can associate very closely with Raina, as he has always found himself in and out of the team.
A complete team player and a selfless person, Raina managed to reserve some of his best knocks for pressure situations. He does not possess those humongous numbers like a Sachin or Kohli does, but the numbers don't often convey the true story of the worth of an individual. He has a Test hundred, an ODI hundred, a WT20 hundred, an IPL hundred, a CLT20 hundred and an ODI WC hundred - The only Indian in the history of the game to achieve this rare feat.
Raina was never an outstanding red ball cricketer, neither did he have the proper technique to succeed in that format. But in the shorter formats of the game, he was an absolute gem for India, whenever he took the field. He is a brilliant fielder, a complete team man who gives his 100% on the field, a very good middle-order batsman and a decent part-time spin option for India. When a wicket falls, when his teammates get to a landmark, whenever the opponent player did something extraordinary, Raina was always there to encourage and celebrate his team player's achievements like his own. He had that child-like enthusiasm on every little good thing that happened to Indian cricket, making him one of the greatest human beings on and off the field in the history of the game!
Raina is not the kind of character who makes you go awe about him based on his numbers but there were many top notch knocks that he played for India in ODIs - to rescue India from a crisis in that particular game, series or in some cases, both of them.
He has five ODI tons with 36 fifty plus scores, with an average of a shade over 35. As Raina turns 32 this week, we roll back the years, witnessing some of the best Suresh Kumar Raina knocks over the course of the last 13 years.
Here, we do not go purely by numbers, the impact that Raina created in that game/series is taken into account.