Suresh Raina was the most notable absentee from the latest central contracts list released by Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) Committee of Administrators (COA). If a former Uttar Pradesh Ranji Trophy coach is to be believed, the 30-year-old cricketer’s inclination towards family is a reason behind it.
“His priorities have changed after he became a family man. I have noticed that he has not been concentrating on his game. He has become a reluctant cricketer. He just played three Ranji matches for UP this season and didn’t turn out for Mushtaq Ali and Vijay Hazare tournaments,” the coach, who did not want to be named, told Mid-day.
“With so many youngsters on the horizon, his chances of a comeback into Indian Test or ODI teams are bleak. He can still eye the T20s, but it will depend a lot on his IPL form where he will lead Gujarat Lions again.”
Though Raina was part of India’s last T20I series against England in February, 2017, he has nopt been in the ODI and Test teams since 2015.
It was also the year that Raina got married to childhood friend Priyanka Chaudhary. Raina became a father in 2016.
Recently, the BCCI COA has doubled the annual retainer fee for the players in central contracts, while increasing the match fee. Grade A, B and C contracted players will now receive amounts of Rs. 2 crore, Rs. 1 crore and Rs. 50 lakh per annum, respectively.
Out-of-favour opening batsman Shikhar Dhawan was demoted to Grade C in the list of contracted players, which was updated by the BCCI on Wednesday. He had earlier been listed in Grade B.
On the other hand, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ravindra Jadeja and Murali Vijay were promoted to Grade A where they join MS Dhoni, skipper Virat Kohli, Ravichandran Ashwin and Ajinkya Rahane.