'Deep down, he must be sad. Has scored runs non-stop': Raina questions veteran India star's omission from T20I squad

  • Weighing in on his former team-mate's exclusion from the India squad, former batter Suresh Raina feels the 36-year-old was hard done by the decision as the experienced opener has always scored runs.
Suresh Raina has reacted to India star's omission from India's T20I squad against South Africa. (Getty)
Suresh Raina has reacted to India star's omission from India's T20I squad against South Africa. (Getty)
Updated on May 24, 2022 08:05 AM IST
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By, New Delhi

Quite a few expected an unexpected surprises unfolded as India's squad for the five-match T20I series against South Africa starting June 9 was announced on Sunday. As reported, the likes of Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami were rested, while KL Rahul was appointed captain. Riding on the high of their success in the IPL 2022, pacers Umran Malik and Arshdeep Singh were rewarded with their maiden India call-up, whereas veteran India wicketkeeper Dinesh Karthik and star all-rounder Hardik Pandya were handed comebacks. Also Read: 'Would've taken a lot of wickets. The surfaces were perfect for his game' - Shastri identifies 'biggest problem' for CSK

While some of these decisions were on expected lines, some weren't, such as the omission of Rahul Tripathi and the experienced Shikhar Dhawan, both of whom have performed brilliantly in the ongoing edition of the IPL. Weighing in on his former team-mate's exclusion from the squad, former India batter Suresh Raina feels Dhawan was hard done by the decision as the experienced opener has always scored runs. In fact, in IPL 2022 alone, Dhawan has amassed 460 runs from 14 matches, to go with 587 last season and 618 the year before that. Yet, Dhawan's name is repeatedly omitted from the T20I set-up.

"Obviously, Shikhar would have been disappointed. Every captain wants a player like him in the team. He is fun loving person who brightens up the environment. And he has always scored runs - be it domestic, international or T20. If you've brought Dinesh Karthik back in the team, Shikhar Dhawan deserved a place too. He has performed runs the last 3-4 years and has scored runs non-stop. Somewhere deep down, he must be sad," Raina said on the Cricket Live show on Star Sports.

As a matter of fact, since 2016, Dhawan has scored at least 500 runs in each edition of the IPL, while playing for several franchises. Dhawan last played T20I for India during the tour of Sri Lanka in July of 2021, where he was the captain of the side. He continues to be part of India's ODI set-up but despite a string of impressive numbers in the IPL, finds himself missing from the T20I set-up.

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