R Ashwin Defends RR Captain Sanju Samson With “Batting Intent” Tweet

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Sanju Samson suffered a low score in the first T20I against Sri Lanka, managing just 5 runs in 6 balls at the Wankhede. However, the 28-year-old Kerala batter showed the kind of intent that the modern T20 game requires. But the low score didn’t sit right with many who trolled Samson.

Senior India off-spinner R Ashwin, though, came out in a tacit defense of his Rajasthan Royals captain, saying that the “processes” in T20 cricket should be measured with great importance, and not just the final outcome.

R Ashwin Defends RR Captain Sanju Samson With “Batting Intent” Tweet

In his short 6-ball stay at the crease, Samson played two slogs to off-spinner Dhananjaya de Silva, but mistimed both of them on a tacky pitch where the ball was holding up.

Samson was playing true to his nature of scoring “impactful” runs and not looking to hog the crease for a longer period with an under-par strike rate. Attempting slogs to Dhananjaya de Silva also meant that Samson was taking on a favorable match-up and hitting with the turn. That it didn’t come off today is a different matter – a matter of execution – but Ashwin perhaps was happy with the intent shown by his RR captain.

Ashwin took to Twitter and wrote: “In this format (T20) measuring performances can prove to be catastrophic if we don’t measure the processes, therefore I believe the “Batting Intent Index” could be a great starting point. #T20 #INDvSL

Cumulative Impact greater than Volume”

While Ashwin didn’t explicitly mention Samson’s name here, it can be understood what and who he was referring to. As the Indian T20I team moves forward in their transition period, this tweet, and thinking of batters scoring “impactful” runs is vital for their success in the modern T20 game, as we have seen with teams like England currently and West Indies in the past. 

Samson had an impressive 2022 in T20Is – in 5 innings last year vs Ireland, West Indies, and Sri Lanka, Samson had scored 179 runs at an average of 44 and strike rate of 158 – his strike rate has been his big selling point in the shortest format.