Former India spinner Pragyan Ojha came up with an interesting analogy to explain why youngsters like Sanju Samson need to perform consistently to stake their claim for a place in the senior India national team. Ojha’s comments came after Sanju Samson began his Indian Premier League (IPL) captaincy stint with Rajasthan Royals on an impressive note.
Pragyan Ojha, speaking to Sports Today after Rajasthan Royals’ 3-wicket win over Delhi Capitals in Mumbai in their IPL 2021 encounter on Thursday, said there is no doubt about the talent that someone like Sanju Samson possess but it’s important for youngsters to keep delivering in order to rise above the competition and seal a permanent spot in the Indian team.
Sanju Samson hit a valiant 119 from just 63 balls against Punjab Kings in Royals’ IPL 2021 opener but it was not enough as the Royals fell agonisingly short of a 222-run target by 4 runs. On Thursday, Samson failed to trouble the scorers much but he led his troops well as Royals sealed a 3-wicket win over Delhi Capitals in a low-scoring thriller in Mumbai.
Samson was appointed as the captain of the Royals in the lead up to IPL 2021 after the former champions released Australia star, Steve Smith. Samson, who made his India debut as early as 2015, has not managed to find a permanent spot in the Indian team but there is no doubting his talent. The Kerala batsman was entrusted with captaincy by the Royals and if early signs are anything to go by, the 26-year-old is hungry for success.
Pointing out that the likes of Rishabh Pant and Ishan Kishan who made their India debuts after Samson are ahead in the queue at the moment, Pragyan Ojha said only players like Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma can afford to have lean patches at the highest level.
“When you talk about Sanju Samson, there is one thing. When he came into this side, there was no Rishabh Pant, there was no Ishan Kishan,” Ojha told Sports Today.
“In this present Indian team, consider this interesting story Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma are like post-paid sim cards. They can push themselves for a bit more time without paying the bills.
“But quite a few youngsters are like pre-paid sim cards. It has to be renewed in the given time otherwise the sim is dead. All these youngsters should understand they are not post-paid sim cards. They are pre-paid sim cards, to become postpaid, they have to perform consistently,” he added.
Samson is one of the few young players who have played more than 100 IPL matches. In 109 matches, Samson has scored 2707 runs at an average of less than 30. At the highest level, Samson has played 7 T20Is but is yet to get a 30-plus total.