Suresh Raina (left) and Brendon McCullum shared a 119-run partnership in 74 balls    IANS
Suresh Raina (left) and Brendon McCullum shared a 119-run partnership in 74 balls IANS

Oct 5, 2014

Chennai Super Kings (CSK) player Brendon McCullum praised Suresh Raina for his brilliant unbeaten innings of 109 which helped CSK clinch their second Champions League T20 (CLT20) title. McCullum said that in conditions like these, Raina is the best T20 player in the world.

“He seemed to be playing a different game, to be honest. He is the best T20 player in the world under these conditions. He just continues to do it time and again. His record is phenomenal and his ability to stand up in big games is huge as well. He is just so calm at the crease and he plays spin bowling exceptionally well,” Raina was quoted as saying by the official website of the CLT20.

McCullum himself wasn’t in great form through the tournament but he contributed a valuable 39 which helped CSK resurrect along with Raina after the early dismissal of Dwayne Smith. “I don t think I hit one ball in the middle (laughs). I wasn t picking the chinaman, so I thought I would just try and sweep him and keep ticking the score over. With the way Raina was playing at the other end it was just a matter of trying to be efficient at the other end.”

McCullum also praised left-arm spinner Pawan Negi who picked five for 22. Negi’s figures stifled a free-flowing KKR innings and restricted them to 180 on a good batting wicket. On Negi’s bowling performance Negi said, “We have seen a lot of young guys standing up to the occasion and realizing their responsibility to perform. Young guys like Pawan Negi, and experienced guys like Suresh Raina stood up on the big stage tonight which is a great sign.”

Complete coverage of Champions League T20 (CLT20) 2014 here