Dubai: Stating that Suresh Raina will be “hugely missed”, Chennai  Super Kings’ (CSK) all-rounder Shane Watson has picked a “gun player” who could replace him in the team’s Playing XI in the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL 2020) in the UAE.

Raina returned to India from Dubai due to personal reasons. The franchise said the left-hander will not play IPL 2020. However, after coming back home, Raina hinted at returning to CSK camp.

IPL 2020 full schedule

Now, Watson has commented on Raina and Harbhajan Singh’s withdrawals. Harbhajan too opted out of the tournament due to personal reasons.

“We have to (deal with the absence of Raina, Harbhajan). The great thing with CSK, as with all IPL squads, is that they have a lot of depth. It’s going to be incredibly hard to replace Suresh Raina. You can’t. He scored the second-most runs in the IPL, played the most games in IPL history. He has got records left, right and centre,” the Australian told Nabeel Hashmi on a YouTube show.

“He is going to be hugely missed, knowing the conditions in the UAE are hot, more chances of wickets being drier and turning a bit more. Raina plays spin incredibly well as well,” he added.

Watson said Raina not being there was a “big loss” but added that they have Murali Vijay to replace him.

“No doubt he (Raina) is a big loss but we have got someone like Murali Vijay, who is a gun player. In T20 cricket, he has not got a lot of opportunities in the last few years. But he is a seriously good batsman. He was sitting on the sidelines last year, he might get more opportunities this year,” Watson opined.

IPL 2020 will begin in Abu Dhabi on September 19 with CSK facing defending champions Mumbai Indians (MI).