'You should be ready': Suresh Raina recalls Yuvraj Singh's words after he scored his maiden Test hundred on debut
Former India cricketer Suresh Raina had a memorable Test debut against Sri Lanka in 2010 in Colombo. The left-hander came on to bat and smashed 120 runs in the match. It was not enough to win the match for India, but certainly helped the MS Dhoni-led side in drawing against an in-form Sri Lankan team.
But in a recent interaction, Raina revealed that he was not initially going to play in the Test. He revealed that Yuvraj Singh was unwell a day before the Test, which led to him being included in the team.
"Just before my Test debut, he (Yuvraj Singh) called me in the night around 12:30 or 1 clock at night. He said 'Suresh, I am not able to sleep, I think I may have a stomach bug or something. You should be ready'. Generally, no one says like this, they usually think we will see how things go in the morning. He was so generous and kind to me to tell me that I should be ready," Raina told sports presenter Gaurav Kapur on his '22 Yarns with Gaurav Kapur' podcast uploaded on Spotify.
"I could not sleep the entire night - thinking I might make my debut the next day, how will I go about it. It has not been discussed in the team meeting. I am not prepared. I don't even know if I will make debut or not," he added.
"Luckily, we lost the toss and were asked to field. We had to field for full two days with Sangakkara and Jayawardene scoring big. Then, after drinking a few coconut waters, I went on to bat," he further said.
"After I scored a hundred, Yuvi paa came up to me and he hugged me. 'This is you, well done, I am so happy for you,' he said to me.
"It was such a good environment at that time. Senior players, taking care of me, looking after me like a younger brother. Looking after you if there is a controversy, they would protect you from the media. They would look after you mentally and give you space where you can perform and express yourself," Raina signed off