Sanju Samson has been in and out of India’s scheme of things but whenever he gets an opportunity to showcase his calibre, he never backs off. He played some top knocks in T20Is against Sri Lanka at home, in February, and also remained among runs during the Ireland and West Indies tours. On Saturday, he played a match-winning knock against Zimbabwe in Harare.
India were reduced to 97/4 in a chase of 162 when Sanju walked out to bat. He smashed three fours and four sixes and returned unbeaten on 43 off 39 balls. He shared a 56-run stand with Deepak Hooda for the fifth wicket to get the match in India’s favour with 146 balls remaining. He also took the player of the match award as India took an unassailable lead in the three-match series.
“I haven’t got much time in the middle, so I wanted to test myself in a pressure (situation). I was really pumped up to be there in a pressure situation and they were also bowling well with good bouncers. I really enjoyed the time in the middle,” said Samson in a chat with broadcasters ahead of the third ODI on Monday.
Despite making his international debut in 2015 and ODI debut in 2021, Samson has largely been in and out of the national side. Asked about his feelings while coming in and out of the national set-up, Samson remarked, “I am a believer that whatever you go through in your career, you have to take it in a positive manner. It was tough watching all your friends play for the country.”
“But I really enjoyed playing those domestic games in that period. I really enjoyed playing domestic cricket for the last four-five years. It is challenging to do well there and that has made me be a better player,” he added.
Samson credited his captaincy stint with Rajasthan Royals in the IPL for furthering his perspective on the game.
“It (captaincy of Rajasthan Royals) has changed my perspective towards cricket. Earlier I used to think only about my batting, my game. Captaincy helps bring about a different mindset — think about others as well apart from your game and helps me improve my cricketing brain. It has helped me to grow as a batsman and cricketer,” Sanju said.
(With Agency Inputs)