Suresh Raina: ‘Was prepared to dive for anything to keep Laxman there’

V.V.S. Laxman.

New Delhi:  V.V.S. Laxman played a talismanic role in India’s nail-biting one wicket win over Australia in the 2010 Mohali Test. Chasing 216 to win on the final day, the hosts found themselves 124/8 with Laxman batting with the tail.

He was battling a back injury and yet he dragged India all the way to the finish line from that point, stitching an 81-run stand for the penultimate wicket with Ishant Sharma and then batting with no.11 Pragyan Ojha.

Suresh Raina was the fourth wicket to fall in the innings but he was caught in the thick of the action as Laxman’s runner. Raina recalled the dramatic final moments of the chase in a chat with former India opener and commentator Aakash Chopra on the latter’s YouTube show AakashVani.

“Laxman had a back spasm so I had to go in as his runner. I had never seen Laxman so angry. He was like ‘Run Ojha Run!’ Before that Ishant Sharma was there with him. Mitchell Johnson was reversing the ball,” said Raina.

“I was prepared to dive for anything. I had decided that I’ll dive if I have slightest of doubts because Laxman had to stay there,” he said.

Laxman ended the match unbeaten on 73 off 79 balls while Ojha made what has to be the most valuable five runs of his Test career.