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Raina using Dutch vacation to fine tune his game

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Determined to make a strong start in the next domestic season, India batsman Suresh Raina is presently undergoing a month-long high intensity training at the synthetic pitches of Amsterdam Cricket Club (ACC) in the Dutch capital.

Raina, who is currently on a vacation with his newly-wed wife Priyanka in The Netherlands, is training with the Dutch national team, which has recently qualified for the ICC Twenty20 World Cup to be held in India next year.

“With the new season around the corner, I am determined, hungry and eager to play the highest form of the game for India,” the 28-year-old left-handed middle-order told PTI from Amsterdam.

“It is wonderful to be able to train with total intensity with the Dutch national team since I want to hit the ground running when the domestic season starts with a series of tournaments across the country in Chennai, Chandigarh and Hyderabad,” he said.

Raina, who will be returning in the last week of this month to India, is looking forward to have a good start to the domestic season starting with the ongoing All India Buchi Babu Cricket Tournament.

During his daily training in Amsterdam, Raina is working on his fitness and spending quality time in the nets facing Dutch medium fast bowlers, including Paul Van Meekeren on the synthetic pitches.

Besides, Raina, who is regarded as one of the best fielders of India, is also spending one hour daily on fielding sessions.

Raina was also impressed by the facilities provided to him by the Amsterdam Cricket Club.

“I am thankful to the Dutch Cricket Board (KNCB) and Amsterdam Cricket Club for letting me use their admirable facilities,” he said.

“I also thank the Dutch medium fast bowlers for giving me the opportunity to practice against them on synthetic pitches,” Raina concluded.

Raina last represented India in the three-match ODI series against Bangladesh in June earlier this, where he got decent starts in all games scoring 40, 34 and 38 respectively but failed to convert them into big scores.

Raina’s last Test appearance for India was in the fourth Test against Australia in January earlier this year.