Suresh Raina and MS Dhoni
Suresh Raina and MS Dhoni (Image Courtesy: Twitter)

Former Indian captain MS Dhoni’s exile from cricket is a topic of never-ending debate. Ever since Martin Guptill ran him out after a valiant half-century, dashing India’s hopes of making it to the 2019 World Cup final, the 38-year old hasn’t donned the Indian colours. Amid his absence from the gentleman’s game, a host of former and current cricketers have weighed on the future of MS Dhoni. Some have gone on to say that he is done playing for India.

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When it comes to MS Dhoni’s camaraderie with fellow cricketers, no one is considered as close to him as Suresh Raina. Suresh Raina could be the only cricketer, who can establish contact with the former captain amid even the lockdown. The 34-year old shares a great rapport with MS Dhoni with the two of them having plied their trade for Chennai Super Kings (CSK) since 2008.

Suresh Raina
Suresh Raina. Credit: BCCI

Reportedly, it was Raina, who MS Dhoni’s wife contacted after giving birth to Ziva in 2015 when her husband wasn’t carrying the phone. Raina being one of the closest friends of the Jharkhand cricketer has weighed on his retirement. The 38-year old’s exile from cricket would have come to a close had it not been for the COVID-19 pandemic, which forced the IPL to get postponed indefinitely.

It’s MS Dhoni’s personal decision. We can’t ask him: Suresh Raina

Suresh Raina, MS Dhoni, IPL 2020, CSK
Suresh Raina and MS Dhoni. Photo by: Prashant Bhoot /SPORTZPICS for BCCI

In a conversation with former Indian cricketer Aakash Chopra, the Uttar Pradesh cricketer bluntly told that the retirement decisions entirely depends upon MS Dhoni. Raina praised his former captain’s longevity, his skills, and concluded by saying it is his personal decision and would announce as per his preference.

“It is his personal decision. We can’t ask him. It’s his personal decision. He has played for so many years. He was batting well.. he was playing new shots…he has something in his mind.” the left-handed batsman said as quoted by Times Now.

In MS Dhoni’s absence, the men in blue have shuffled between KL Rahul and Rishabh Pant for keeping wickets. Nevertheless, over the last two series, KL Rahul has made that position his own. However, India would need a finisher for the T20 World Cup this year or the next year, and there is none other than the former captain suited for that role.

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