IND vs BAN: A well-earned recall for Sanju Samson

Returning to the national team after four years, the Kerala big-hitter finds a big opportunity to showcase his skills at the top level.

In the IPL, Sanju Samson has proved time and again how dangerous he can be in T20s.   -  R. V. Moorthy

It has been one long wait for Sanju Samson.

His name would often crop up when the future of Indian cricket is discussed. Brian Lara had picked him as one of India’s five brightest young talents during the last IPL. Gautam Gambhir doesn’t get tired of talking about his explosive talent; he had felt the Kerala batsman could have been India’s No. 4 at the last World Cup.

The selectors, however, were not convinced. His lack of consistency in the domestic tournaments didn’t help, either.

Still, that he was overlooked for even the ‘A’ teams had seemed strange on a few occasions. At the IPL, he had proved time and again how dangerous he could be in T20s.

And it is for the shortest format that he returns to international cricket — four years after playing his only T20I, against Zimbabwe in Harare. This is a well-earned recall for Sanju.

It is a big opportunity for him to show the world his undoubted skills as an attractive strokemaker who can change the course of a game quickly. And it could not have come at a better time.

Destructive double

After playing some stunning innings for Rajasthan Royals at the last IPL, he has begun the new season in cracking form. He had made a 48-ball 91 for India ‘A’ against South Africa ‘A’ in his hometown of Thiruvananthapuram last month before scoring an astonishing, record-breaking 212 not out off 129 balls for Kerala against Goa in the Vijay Hazare Trophy in Bengaluru, just a fortnight ago.

Dav Whatmore had watched that rare List ‘A’ double hundred. “It was a privilege watching him play that innings,” Kerala's coach told Sportstar. “I am delighted that he has been picked in the Indian squad for the T20 format, which suits him really well. The call has come at the right time for him, when he is scoring consistently.”

Support Sportstar


Dear Reader,

Support our journalism — where text and pictures intermingle so seamlessly — and help us scale up your experience as the world changes around us. Your contribution is vital to our brand of uninfluenced, boots-on-the-ground reportage that’s worth your while. Clickbait sensationalism is not for us, but editorial independence is — we owe it to you.

  Dugout videos