NEW DELHI, Aug 18: Suresh Raina was a �terrific team man� who could have amassed more runs if he had batted up the order, said batting great Rahul Dravid, saluting him for the role he played in India�s success in white-ball cricket.
The 33-year-old Raina surprised many when he followed his mentor Mahendra Singh Dhoni in international retirement, announcing his decision, just minutes after the former India skipper called it quit on August 15.
Dravid, who had presented Raina with the ODI and Test caps, on Tuesday paid glowing tribute to the left-handed batsman.
�A lot of success that India had in white-ball cricket, a lot of great moments and memories that India had over the last decade and a half, Suresh has been a really big part of that. I think his contribution in white-ball cricket has been fantastic,� he said in a video posted by BCCI on its twitter handle.
�He is a World Cup winner and Champions Trophy winner. He contributed so much on the field, his energy, the enthusiasm he brought, the way he raised the standard on field...�
A middle-order batsman, Raina amassed nearly 8000 runs representing India in 18 Tests, 226 ODIs and 78 T20Is in an international career spanning 13 years.
�One thing we always felt is that Suresh did all the difficult things,� said Dravid, who is the current NCA chief.
�For most part of his career, he batted lower down the order, fielded at difficult positions and bowled some handy overs and always brought a lot to the team. A terrific team man, who always gave his best, brought great energy to the game and a very skilful batter.
�Honestly his numbers could have been a lot better if he had batted higher up the order, that has been shown in the success he had for CSK (Chennai Super Kings) in the IPL where he bats at No. 3. He has been a phenomenal player for IPL.� � PTI