Ghaziabad: On the eve of the selection of India's XV member Test squad, many had predicted that Suresh Raina might lose his place. But the man himself, probably, expected to make the cut. At least his reactions say so.
Raina, captaining Uttar Pradesh in the Ranji Trophy game against Delhi, was so upset after learning about his ouster from the Test squad that he decided to skip lunch on Monday, the final day of the Ranji tie.
According to a source in the UP dressing room, once Raina got the news of his omission from the squad for the first two Tests, announced by Sandeep Patil and Co. in Mumbai, he was not in a mood to have food and literally went into a shell.
"He was very sad and told his teammates that he is not in a mood to eat... He is a very bubbly character in the dressing room, but suddenly went very quiet… He also didn't stay back to collect the mementos presented by the Ghaziabad District Cricket Association and left immediately after UP had won," the source said.
While Uttar Pradesh stunned the star-studded Delhi by six wickets, Kohli, who promoted himself to the No.3 position in the second innings, scored 37.
Like Raina, none of the top Delhi players attended the function and chose to stay in the dressing room despite their names being called repeatedly over the public address system. The Man of the Match award went jointly to the winners' opening batsman Mukul Dagar and pacer Imtiaz Ahmed.
Uttar Pradesh coach Venkatesh Prasad was unhappy with the national selection committee's decision. "I think it's really unfortunate that Raina is not there in the Indian team. I am surprised by his omission… He is one player, who, I thought, would surely be in the team," Prasad, a former India medium pacer, said.
"Any player, who has been selected to play Test cricket, should also be given a long run to prove his mettle. Raina is a wonderful batsman and played a good knock in the last Test he played… Even here, in this match, he played crucial roles in both the innings," he added. (Agencies)
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