The independent voice of cricket

Indian Premier League 2020

Suresh Raina suggests gruesome family tragedy was reason behind IPL withdrawal

by Wisden Staff 2-minute read

Suresh Raina, the Chennai Super Kings all-rounder, has spoken publicly for the first time since his sudden and shock return home from IPL 2020 in UAE.

Last week, CSK released a statement saying Raina, a core member of the side, would return to India due to “personal reasons”. There’s been plenty of speculation since then, with reports even suggesting that Raina’s unhappiness with his hotel room in Dubai sparked a rift with captain MS Dhoni.

However, Raina has now taken to Twitter to suggest a family tragedy on August 19 – his uncle was “slaughtered to death” – was the reason behind his quick return to India.

“What happened to my family is Punjab was beyond horrible,” Raina tweeted. “My uncle was slaughtered to death, my bua [aunt] & both my cousins had sever [sic] injuries. Unfortunately my cousin also passed away last night after battling for life for days. My bua is still very very critical & is on life support.

“Till date we don’t know what exactly had happened that night & who did this. I request @PunjabPoliceInd to look into this matter. We at least deserve to know who did this heinous act to them. Those criminals should not be spared to commit more crimes. @capt_amarinder @CMOPb”

Raina, the most-capped player in the tournament, decided to fly back to India from the UAE, with reports suggesting he had concerns with the bio-secure bubble set in place for the tournament. His decision to make himself unavailable for the entire season came after the announcement that 13 members of the CSK contingent in UAE had tested positive for Covid-19.

A report in Outlook India stated that Raina’s reasons included weariness at being “cooped up” in the strict bio-secure protocols, and also dissatisfaction at his hotel room, which “did not have proper balconies”.

The report went on to quote N Srinivasan, the CSK owner, saying cricketers were like “prima donnas” and that Raina would “certainly realise what he is missing, and certainly all the money [reportedly INR 11 crore] he is going to lose.”

Raina has been part of CSK since the inaugural season in 2008, barring two seasons at Gujarat Lions in 2016 and 2017 when the Chennai-based franchise was suspended. He is the IPL’s second-highest run-getter at the moment, and had missed just one game for the franchise in 10 seasons, until now, when he’ll miss the whole tournament.

Have Your Say

Become a Wisden member

  • Exclusive offers and competitions
  • Money-can’t-buy experiences
  • Join the Wisden community
  • Sign up for free
Latest magazine

Get the magazine

12 Issues for just £39.99