Former Indian batsman Suresh Raina has named three players who have impressed him the most. Raina picked Devdutt Padikkal, Ruturaj Gaikwad and Axar Patel in his list. The CSK player also named Mohammed Siraj as one player who has also impressed him the most.
Devdutt Padikkal recently scored 737 runs in the Vijay Hazare trophy while playing for Karnataka in eight matches. Padikkal batted at the top of his game and ended as the second highest run-getter of the tournament. Furthermore, the southpaw has also impressed while playing for RCB in the IPL.
Gaikwad has done well while playing under MS Dhoni’s tutelage for Chennai Super Kings. The right-hander was one of the biggest positives for the franchise when CSK had a dry run in IPL 2020.
Axar Patel made a fine start to his Test career as he bamboozled the England batsmen in the home series. The left-arm spinner was able to scalp 27 wickets in three Test matches and played a key role in India’s win.
“I think Devdutt Padikkal from Karnataka. After him, Ruturaj Gaikwad from Maharashtra. He is a gun player. Axar Patel has worked really hard, and he performed brilliantly well in the absence of Ravindra Jadeja,” Raina said while talking to News18.
On the other hand, Raina didn’t pick Rishabh Pant, who has taken giant strides at the top level. Pant has grown in confidence after the Australia tour but Raina feels that the wicket-keeper batsman has good experience now and he doesn’t consider him in the list of newcomers.
“See, he has entered the senior category. He’s grown. He is also hitting fours now and not only sixes,” he explained.
Furthermore, Raina picked Mohammed Siraj, who made a dream start to his Test career. Siraj finished as India’s highest wicket-taker on the Australia tour in 2020-21 series as he scalped 13 wickets in three matches. Raina gave credit to his former Indian skipper, Rahul Dravid, for getting the best out of young players.
“Even Mohammed Siraj is bowling so well. And somewhere I feel credit goes to Rahul Dravid who has worked extremely hard with the Under-19 team which is why he is with the senior team now and my best wishes to Shikhar Dhawan, that he does well and return to the Test team because he too is a very big player for India and he must be hoping to perform well in Sri Lanka,” Raina added.