'I can't believe he did not play Test Cricket' - Robin Uthappa on Ambati Rayudu's retirement

The IPL 2023 final will be the last match of Ambati Rayudu's career.

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Robin Uthappa and Ambati Rayudu
Robin Uthappa and Ambati Rayudu. (Photo Source: Twitter)

After Ambati Rayudu announced his retirement from the Indian Premier League (IPL), the former Chennai Super Kings (CSK) batter, Robin Uthappa, delivered an emotional tribute to his former teammate. Rayudu announced his retirement from the IPL before the summit clash between CSK and Gujarat Titans (GT) in the 16th edition of the lucrative competition. However, his last appearance was postponed to Monday, May 29, with rain playing spoilsport at the Narendra Modi Stadium, in Ahmedabad.

Rayudu, according to Uthappa, is one of the most underrated players India have ever produced. Owing to the experienced campaigner in Rayudu, the former was left in utter disbelief for the latter not getting his due. Notably, Rayudu did not play for India in the longest format of the game.

"He has been there, done that, and seen it all. He is one of the most underrated cricketers India has ever produced. He should have played Test Cricket, I can't believe he did not play the game," Uthappa told JioCinema.

Uthappa went on to say that Ambati Rayudu has been a proficient student of the game, someone who knows the game inside and out. Furthermore, he hailed him as a team player and that any team would have loved him. He added that the 37-year-old's retirement was both sad and touching for him.

"He is an astute student of the game, someone who knows the game inside out. Absolute team man will do anything for the team. Every team would have loved to have him," Uthappa continued.

"I have loved him from the age of my junior days. He dominated cricket through junior cricket. His retirement is kind of sombre and heartfelt for me," the 37-year-old stated.

Rayudu opened in 2018, scored 600 runs and CSK won the title: Uthappa

Robin Uthappa also recalled Rayudu opening and scoring 602 runs for CSK in the IPL 2018 when his career was considered to be over. He said that Rayudu was mocked by many for his performance, but once CSK won the title, he was showered with praises. Notably, his outstanding performance in the 2018 season helped the Andhra Pradesh-born cricketer to make a comeback in the India squad.

Moreover, the former CSK member also pointed out that despite being given different roles at different stages of his IPL career, Rayudu always stood up. Uthappa feels that a lot of credit also goes to support staff who always backed the veteran batter. Besides, Rayudu never complained about getting challenged about donning different roles by the team management.

"He did the grunt work for CSK. He opened in 2018, scored 600 runs and CSK won the title. They sent him in the middle to do grunt work after that. And he has done it without any complaint," Uthappa further added.

"People have trolled him for his performances and all that, but he has taken it on his chin. And the support staff have rallied around him. He deserves all the accolades," Uthappa concluded.

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