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Rayudu looks up to 'everybody's go-to man' Dhoni ahead of Asia Cup campaign opener

Press Trust of India  |  Dubai 

Batsman is looking up to "everybody's go-to man" Mahendra Singh Dhoni for inspiration and guidance as a Virat Kohli-less gear up for the here.

reached UAE without Kohli, who has been rested by the selectors owing to excess workload.

"Obviously he (Virat) is a big miss and loss to the team. However, we still have enough quality in the team to go out and win. He (Dhoni) has been India's and always been the go-to man for everybody in the team," Rayudu said at a on Saturday.

"He (Dhoni) has helped me a lot in terms of how I recovered this season."

With yet to settle their middle-order conundrum with less than a year left for the World Cup, there is a chance for players such as Rayudu to cement their places in the team.

"To be very honest, (I) haven't thought about it (middle-order) or looked at it as a competition. It's just an opportunity to express myself and (I) don't want to put more pressure to my game by thinking about these," he said.

The 32-year-old, returning to the team after a long injury-induced layoff, added, "I don't think anybody is actually thinking about We are in for the and I don't think anybody is thinking about it right now."

India's opening match in the tournament is against Hong Kong on September 18, a day before they take on traditional rivals

"I don't think it will be a disadvantage. It will be definitely tough and I'm sure we will do best possible things to recover and go out fresh to play the next game."

He said that it was frustrating to miss out on the limited overs leg of the England tour despite a stellar season for Chennai Super Kings. Rayudu failed to the make the Indian team after flunking the yo-yo test in his first attempt.

"Obviously it was frustrating to miss out on the England tour. But I'm happy that I can come back and give the test and get picked to play in the

"This year I played well in the IPL. The main thing is that I feel age doesn't matter as long as you are fit."

After clearing the yo-yo tests at the second attempt, Rayudu played for India A in the Tri-Series involving Australia A and A, and tasted success.

His 62 not out against Australia A in a low-scoring affair in turned out to be a Man-of-the-Match performance. Against A at Alur, he made 66.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sun, September 16 2018. 10:50 IST