Explained: Why Sanju Samson Was Not Picked For The T20 World Cup 2022

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Explained: Why Sanju Samson Was Not Picked For The T20 World Cup 2022

Sanju samson t20 world cup 2022

Sanju Samson’s exclusion is still not as severe as that of Ambati Rayudu in 2019, but the Kerala batter has some reasons to be upset - especially after Rohit Sharma's statement earlier this year.


T20 World Cup 2022: But first, what skipper Rohit Sharma believes - or what he told everyone he believes - about Sanju Samson back in February this year when the Kerala star was recalled for the Sri Lanka series: “His back-foot play is superb, some of the shots you must have seen during the IPL, the pick-up pull, the cut shots, standing and delivering over bowler’s head. Those kinds of shots are not easy to play and I believe when we go to Australia, you need those kind of shot-making ability and Samson does has it in him. I just hope that he utilises his potential to the maximum.”

None of this from Sharma is refutable. For Sanju Samson is amongst the most elegant, clean-hitting batsmen in the country, who has made his name as an IPL superstar.

Sanju Samson's Impressive Educational Qualifications

Sanju Samson’s numbers this year are unignorable: 6 T20Is, 179 runs, average 44, strike rate 158; 17 IPL matches for RR, 458 runs, average 28, strike rate 146.

The first indication that Sanju Samson was out of India’s plans for this year’s T20 World Cup was when he was not only omitted from the Asia Cup 15-man squad, but also was not in the standby players with Shreyas Iyer getting the nod; Iyer got the nod again in the reserves over the RR skipper.

Here is India’s squad for the T20 World Cup 2022 next month:

Rohit Sharma (c), KL Rahul (vc), Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Deepak Hooda, Rishabh Pant (wk), Dinesh Karthik (wk), Hardik Pandya, R. Ashwin, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Harshal Patel, Arshdeep Singh.

Standby players: Mohammed Shami, Shreyas Iyer, Ravi Bishnoi, Deepak Chahar.

Deepak Hooda, who had similar numbers to Samson in the IPL 2022, has been an overwhelming favourite to get in India’s 15-man but also in the playing eleven in absence of Ravindra Jadeja - because the team looks at Hooda as a batsman who can chip in with 1 or 2 overs of his off-spin.

But, to think, it’s a bit debatable that a batsman (Hooda) is selected over another batsman because he can bowl. However, what India should have learned from their Asia Cup losses to Pakistan and Sri Lanka is that if they do play Hooda, there is little to expect when he’s coming in late and down the order while his success for Lucknow came while batting in the top 5.

And like Hooda, Sanju Samson also is a top-four batter - for he has batted only twice below number 5 in 2022 with no astonishing results. Also, both Hooda and Samson have shown their willingness to bat aggressively from the onset of their innings, suiting India’s newly adopted T20 batting template.

Then, with Pant, KL Rahul and Dinesh Karthik in the squad, Samson’s wicket-keeping skills were not going to turn any selector in his favour, like it did with Hooda’s bowling.

You may call Sanju Samson’s exclusion from the 15-man squad - and Hooda being pipped over the RR captain - fair, but him not getting a place in the reserves over Shreyas Iyer is quite startling.

Forget Iyer’s inferior IPL 2022 numbers to Sanju Samson, and his struggles after the IPL in the last three series vs South Africa, England and West Indies (where his strike rate was less than 125) - it is a dreading aspect for Indian fans to imagine Iyer - if he gets a place in the line-up should one or two batters get injured - being consistently hammered with short and hard lengths in Australian conditions! Samson, on the other hand, has shown adeptness in handling high pace and bounce.

Samson’s exclusion is still not as severe as that of Ambati Rayudu in 2019, but the Kerala batter has some reasons to be upset - especially after Rohit’s statement earlier this year.