Suresh Raina revealed that MS Dhoni consulted him before deciding to replace him in the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) playing XI for the remaining matches in the 2021 Indian Premier League (IPL) season.
Suresh Raina is one of the finest Indian cricketers, especially in the limited-overs format. However, during the twilight of his IPL career, Raina struggled to bat as fluently as he used to, prompting CSK to explore other options.
In a significant revelation, Raina disclosed that CSK captain MS Dhoni had a conversation with him before replacing him with Robin Uthappa in the playing XI during IPL 2021. Raina convinced Dhoni to give Uthappa a chance and play him for the remaining matches of the season. Raina said, “When MS Dhoni and I talked, I suggested to him, ‘You should try Robin Uthappa.’ He took permission from me to play him, and I told him, ‘He is the guy to give you the final, trust me.'” Raina shared this information with Uthappa during an interview on JioCinema.
Dhoni expressed his desire to win the season and asked Raina for his advice. Raina recommended playing Uthappa at number 3 and ensuring his place in the playing XI until the final. Raina emphasized that whether he played or Uthappa, both would contribute equally to the team’s success. Following this decision, CSK experienced a turnaround in their performance, with Uthappa playing a crucial role in helping the team achieve success. Uthappa accumulated 115 runs in four matches, including a quickfire 31 off 15 balls in the final against the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), leading CSK to a 27-run victory and their fourth IPL title.
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