The drama surrounding Suresh Raina continues with its twists and turns with indications now that the Chennai Super Kings star could rejoin the franchise towards the end of the month after exiting the UAE on Saturday.
While Raina indicated as much in an interview to NDTV, sources have told The Telegraph that the matter has been amicably settled after the cricketer personally apologised to co-owner N. Srinivasan for his conduct. The final decision though will be taken by team captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and coach Stephen Fleming but that, one understands, remains a formality.
CSK haven’t sought a replacement for Raina yet.
Rajasthan Royals wicketkeeper Robin Uthappa at practice on Wednesday Source: twitter.com/rajasthanroyals
The Telegraph had reported on Tuesday that there was a “serious breach of discipline” inside the bio-security bubble at Taj Dubai, where the team is staying, following which Raina left.
“It was a personal decision and I had to come back for my family. There was something that needed to be addressed immediately at the home front and CSK is my family too and Mahi bhai is most important to me and this was a tough decision but with the family back home, I had to come back for them,” Raina was quoted as saying.
Kolkata Knight Riders’ Shubman Gill trains in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday Source: twitter.com/KKRiders
Raina said that Srinivasan had understood the reason for his coming back and things were “all settled”.
“He is like a father figure for me and he’s always stood by me and is close to my heart, he treats me like his younger son... He didn’t know the reason earlier and it’s all settled,” Raina said.
There had been a violent attack on Raina’s aunt’s family in Punjab’s Pathankot district, allegedly a case of robbery, resulting in the death on his uncle on the intervening night of August 19 and 20, on the eve of the team’s departure for Dubai.
“CSK is a family for me, it’s like home. A lot of what was said was taken out of context and Srini Sir is like a father figure to me. He treats me like his own and when he got to know why I had to leave he understood the reason.
“You never know, you might see me in the camp again. First, I have to take care of my responsibilities here and then am ready,” the left-handed batsman said.
Shikhar Dhawan wishes Delhi Capitals teammate Ishant Sharma (left) on his birthday on Wednesday Source: twitter.com/SDhawan25
Srinivasan said the ball was in the team management’s court.
“Look, please understand, that’s not my domain at all,” he was quoted as saying by a news agency. “We own a team, we own the franchise but we do not own players. I don’t own the players.”
“I am not the cricket captain… We have the greatest captain of all times. So, why shall I even interfere in cricketing matters?”