“I do not want to use the word ‘retirement’ because you are way too young and energetic to ‘retire’,” the PM wrote in his letter to the 33-year-old Raina, who surprised many with his decision to bring the curtain down on his international career. Both Raina and Dhoni told the world about their decision to retire on their Instagram accounts.
“Generations will remember you not only as a fine batsman but also as a very useful bowler who the captain could turn to when the situation demanded…it would take days to count just the number of runs you have saved by your alertness on the field,” the letter further says.
The Prime Minister also made a special mention also of India’s 2011 World Cup-winning campaign, which Raina was part of. The PM recalled watching Raina live at the stadium during the tournament.
“I saw you live in action at the Motera Stadium, Ahmedabad, during the Quarter Final against Australia. Your anchoring innings (34 not out) had a big role to play in our team’s victory,” the letter further read.
On Friday morning, Raina thanked PM Modi on social media and shared images of the letter.
“When we play, we give our blood & sweat for the nation. No better appreciation than being loved by the people of this country and even more by the country’s PM. Thank you @narendramodi ji for your words of appreciation & best wishes. I accept them with gratitude. Jai Hind!” Raina tweeted.
When we play, we give our blood & sweat for the nation. No better appreciation than being loved by the people of th… https://t.co/JQ4unEZAYs
— Suresh Raina🇮🇳 (@ImRaina) 1597980771000
Raina will be seen in action next for the Chennai Super Kings, who are led by Dhoni, in the upcoming Indian Premier League season to be played in the UAE from September 19 to November 10.
Raina, a formidable all-round white-ball cricketer, played 226 ODIs for India, scoring 5615 runs at an average of 35.31, including five centuries and 36 half-centuries. In 78 T20Is, he scored 1605 runs, including one century and five fifties.
Raina also played 18 Tests during his career, scoring 768 runs, including one century and seven half-centuries.
Raina has the distinction of being the first batsman from India to score a century in all three formats of the game in international cricket.