Suresh Raina has highlighted the impact of former Indian team head coach Greg Chappell. In his forthcoming autobiography, Believe: What Life and Cricket Taught Me, the former India international mentioned the positive influence Chappell had on that generation of players.
Chappell was the India coach between 2005 and 2007 but his rein was largely marred by controversy.
The Australian came under the scanner for his conduct with the then skipper Sourav Ganguly, who was forced out of the team at the time. Raina maintains that the seeds of the triumph of the 2011 World Cup were sown during the Chappell era.
In his autobiography, the 34-year-old wrote, “I think somewhere along the line, despite all the controversies around his coaching career, he taught India how to win and the importance of winning.”
India were considered nervous in run chases to a great extent during the ’90s and early 2000s. A batting collapse was almost predestined when the side came under extreme pressure. However, under Chappell, the team emerged as a strong squad especially while chasing totals. India won 14 consecutive matches while chasing under the captaincy of Rahul Dravid. Given that the team was considered poor chasers, it was an astonishing feat.
Raina gave credit to the efforts of the captain and Chappell. “We were all playing well at that point, but I remember him stressing a lot on breaking down run chases at batting meetings,” wrote Raina.
The batting order, pointed out Raina, was fixed very well including the likes of Yuvraj Singh, MS Dhoni and Raina himself. They learned to take the pressure and the responsibility of chasing and winning very well.
Raina made his international debut in 2005 under Chappell. The left-handed batter retired from international cricket in August last year.
However, he continues to play in the IPL for the Chennai Super Kings.