Sanju Samson dazzles with his performance in IPL

By Gaurav Joshi

Each year there is one innings from Sanju Samson that features in the top 5 innings of the IPL. Each year there is a shot, that has the commentators and the spectators spell bound.   At the end of each IPL, the question on everyone’s lips is ”˜When will he be a permanent part of the national team’?

On Sunday afternoon Samson had turned the questions into a statement.   With the national skipper in the opposition ranks Samson tore apart the Royal Bangalore Challengers bowling unit apart with an unbeaten knock of 92 from 45 balls to lead his team to a convincing win.

With each stroke he dazzled, but perhaps above all the aspect that stood out the most was his maturity and game sense.

Samson had a good beginning in the IPL with the scores of 49 and 37 in the opening two matches, but when asked about his knock of 92 in the innings break, he was quickly stated, ”˜I had been playing well but I had not done by job by batting deep into the innings’.

This season he has strode to the crease in the opening over and being the aggressor. He had to restrain himself against the Sunrisers as the middle order fell away quickly. Then on Sunday, he held almost played a secondary role to a Stokes and Butler through the middle overs, before shifting into fifth gear during a time his team needed him the most.

At the end of the 16th over, Samson had made 42 from 30 balls in the next 15 balls he smashed 50. Until the 16th over, 75% of his boundaries had been scored via the virtue of the pull shot or a bottom hand flick through the onside then as he exploded in the final overs he hit the ball sailing over the ropes to the left and the right of the sightscreen.

While it was the crisp lofted shots over cover and mid-off that remained the highlights of Samson’s knock, the shot that that optimized Sanju’s immense talent came in the 19th over off the bowling of Chris Woakes. The ball was full and would have landed right on the crease, signifying a perfect yorker, but Samson was up to the mark, he simply lowered his head towards the stumps, eased the tension in his arms and just opened his wrists ever so slightly, as his willow made contact with the ball just after it had hit the turf.   The timing was precise and the ball sped past the third man for a boundary.

The mechanics of his batting are sound and as Sunil Gavaskar stated before the match out of the next emerging wealth of talent in Rishab Pant and Ishan Kishan,   the boy from Kerala had the best technique by a mile.

Samson’s supreme knocks again raised the questions as to why he has not been able to find a place in the national team.

Shane Warne has an uncanny knack of elevating careers and instilling a level of confidence in youngsters.   This season he has Samson under his wing and it might just be the mentor Samson requires to take the next step.





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