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Want to See MS Dhoni Keep Playing, Still Think India Needs Him: Suresh Raina

Suresh Raina believes that MS Dhoni can still be of use to the Indian cricket team but that it is up to team management whether or not they want to recall him.

Cricketnext Staff |January 24, 2020, 10:30 AM IST
Want to See MS Dhoni Keep Playing, Still Think India Needs Him: Suresh Raina

Suresh Raina believes that MS Dhoni can still be of use to the Indian cricket team but that it is up to team management whether or not they want to recall him.

“Dhoni will probably be coming to Chennai in the first week of March to train ahead of the IPL. Right now, it is so good to see him spending a lot of time with his family,” Raina told The Times of India.

“If he wants to leave the game, he will go without making a big fuss. I want to see him continue to play. He is looking fit and has been training hard.

“I still think the Indian team needs him. But it is Virat's call on how they go forward.”

Raina, who has played 226 ODIs and 78 T20Is for India, has not yet given up hope on getting recalled to the Indian team.

The 33-year old, who is coming back from a second knee surgery, believes a good IPL could bring him back into contention for the T20 World Cup.

“It is too early right now (to talk about a comeback). I have always enjoyed my cricket, irrespective of where I play. I have not set any target right now.

“If I am able to do well in the IPL, I will be able to understand how I am shaping up. I have played enough to know what the situation demands. So my T20 World Cup hopes depend on my performance in the IPL.

“If I can make my knee strong and have a good IPL, then I know that I have another 2-3 years of cricket left in me. There are two back-to-back T20 World Cups. I have done well in T20 cricket.”

One of the reasons why he remains at least cautiously optimistic of a recall is because India’s middle-order remains a weak point, despite Shreyas Iyer being a solid option at number 4.

However, Raina believes that team management needs to show patience with the batsmen they have and that will help them in the long run.

“The support of the captain and team management will definitely solve this middle-order drama. You can't expect (Shreyas) Iyer and (Rishabh) Pant to score big runs in every game.

“You have to give them the assurance that they will not be dropped. Iyer is very good at No. 4. I am sure Pant too will make a lot of difference because he is a left-hander.

“It is important to have that variety in the batting department. I do think Virat knows what he is doing. Rohit has a lot of experience too. So I am sure they will give youngsters the right advice.”

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