Sanju Samson reveals was named as the new captain of the Rajasthan Royals, replacing Steve Smith, for IPL 2021. He was, in fact, told earlier about being appointed as the skipper before the official announcement.
The 26-year-old excitedly told his close friends, parents, and wife about the good news before it was officially announced by the franchise. Once it did, congratulatory messages galore on Sanju Samson’s inbox, including from the likes of Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, and MS Dhoni.
“It was tough keeping it to myself,” he said beaming.“I got some nice congratulatory messages from Virat bhai, Rohit bhai and Mahi bhai,” Sanju Samson told Hindustan Times.
He has captained Kerala under-19, and the senior team recently in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy. He has been with the Royals since 2013, barring 2016 and 2017 when the franchise was banned. The keeper-batsman speaks about the faith the franchise has shown in him throughout the years.
“The fact that my team and the franchise trust me to do this job gives great confidence that there is something in me. I firmly believe that a captain is only good if the team is good. The Royals have a quality bunch of great players and amazing support staff backing them. I’ve known most of them for years; they are like family.
“So, I’m in a comfortable space with the people I have around me. I have been part of the Royals from my teen days in 2013. Playing for one team for this long to now becoming captain, it’s a proud moment,” he added.
I believe good things are ahead of us: Sanju Samson
Last season, the inaugural champions finished at the bottom of the points table. However, Samson reckons they didn’t play too badly and have a strong side this year as well.
Rajasthan has invested heavily in Chris Morris – INR 16.25 crore – in the February auction, and will hope for the all-rounder to come good in absence of Jofra Archer. Sanju Samson himself will want to put a more consistent show with the bat and would hope to return to India’s T20I side.
“I don’t think we did too much wrong in the last season. If you look at our XI on paper, we’re one of the best. So I would like to tell everyone that we are a great bunch of players and we just need to play some good cricket. If we are in the right mindset as a team, I believe good things are ahead of us. This format demands a lot of fearless cricket, be it in batting, bowling or fielding. It’s all about speed, power and expressing yourself. That’s what I expect from my team,” Samson stated.