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Suresh Raina confident of regaining his spot in the Indian team

The left-hander also expresses satisfaction on the performance of Gujarat Lions.

Suresh Raina
Raina refused to answer if he had been rested or dropped for the Zimbabwe tour

When the Indian squad for the limited-overs trip to Zimbabwe was announced, there was one name which went missing. After missing out on India’s previous ODI series in Australia, Suresh Raina may have paid the price for his woeful form in the recent T20I season.

However, the 29-year old was non-committal on whether he had been dropped or rested for the Zimbabwe tour. Speaking to Bangalore Mirror, Raina also sounded confident on reclaiming his spot in Team India.

He asserted, “You may call whatever you want - whether I was rested or dropped (for the Zimbabwe trip). One-day, T20 or Test matches, I will strive to get back my place in the Indian teams.”

The southpaw added, “I have got four months to regain my mojo. It is a blessing for me. The selection is not in my hands, the performance is. I think I have done well as a captain and player. I will rest for some time and then restart. There is a lot of cricket left in me. My body needs a bit of rest. Once that is done, I can do well.”

After a match-winning effort in the Sydney T20I in Australia which sealed a 3-0 series whitewash, Raina suffered a massive decline and could only manage 130 runs from 13 subsequent international games.

Though his future remains in considerable doubt, the affable cricketer believed that he was going through a wonderful phase. The left-hander felt, "I am enjoying my time. I have become a father and it is a new experience. I have played non-stop for 11 years and still pretty fit. I have age on my side.”

Looking forward to turn his fortunes around in the upcoming domestic season, Raina affirmed, “I think I will have my next competitive game in September and so I will rest for a while before starting all over again. I will spend some time with my wife and daughter (in Netherlands) before hitting the gym to get ready for the domestic grind.”

Reflecting on the recently concluded IPL season, the Gujarat Lions skipper noted, “It was a good season for us. A new franchise, new owners, new coaches, new players and new challenges. I had to do a lot of planning.Team owner (Keshav Bansal) was very energetic and he gave me all the freedom to express myself. We became No 1 team if not the champions.”

When asked about his captaincy stint, Raina revealed, “The captaincy experience was very good. I played under stalwarts like Rahul Dravid and MS Dhoni. Particularly, I have learnt a lot from MS. No need to say he is a top captain from India and playing under him was a great learning experience. I did exactly the way he used to react to different situations and tried to imbibe his man-management skills.”

On the possibility of coming back to Chennai Super Kings in 2018 when the franchise’s suspension would be lifted, he maintained, “I can't answer that query either. It will be decided by the IPL dynamics.”

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