Brisbane, Jan 19: Relieved to be in good ODI form ahead of next month's World Cup, Indian batsman Suresh Raina said he would have been left devastated after his dismal failure in the cricket Test series against Australia had his side failed to draw the last two matches.
Raina scored a half-century in the tri-series ODI against Australia after having bagged a 'pair' in his return to Test cricket after two years. India lost the Test series 0-2 but earned appreciation for fighting draws in the last two matches.
"In Sydney (fourth Test) I played my first Test after more than two years and didn't score a run. That hit me real bad. Everyone in the team tried to cheer me up saying 'it's okay, it was hard luck'. But I was really disappointed. I was just stunned. It felt like a bad dream. I had worked so hard for this opportunity and earned it after so long," Raina told 'bcci.tv'.
"It happened to me in England in 2011 I got a pair in the Oval Test and then did well in the ODIs. So, I had been in that situation before. But this time it was tougher because of how long I had waited for this chance. What helped me get over it was that we drew the Test. Had we lost it, it would have been devastating for me," he said.
Raina said the drawn matches were a huge factor in helping him reboot himself and be prepared for the ODI tri-series, which also features England.
"I learned a lot in the next two days after that Test, gathered myself and practised really hard with the white ball. It was a new format and the one I have done well in. I put the Test behind me and started to focus on the ODIs. I am glad I could score a few runs right away," he said.
His weakness against the rising deliveries has been analysed quite often but Raina said he is a better player of the short delivery now. "People have been talking about the short ball for years now.
But I have come a long way. I worked hard with Sachin paaji at the BKC and with (Pravin) Amre sir as well. I believe I have improved a lot in that regards and it shows in the way I have been playing the bouncer for quite a while now," he pointed out.