India finally gave Sanju Samson a chance in the playing eleven for the third T20I against Sri Lanka on Friday. India made as many as three changes to the playing eleven that beat Sri Lanka in the second T20I. Along with Sanju Samson, Manish Pandey and Yuzvendra Chahal got a chance in the playing eleven too. The right-handed batsman played just his second game for India.
Sanju Samson had earned a recall from the national team after a long gap of four years during the Bangladesh T20Is in November. However, he did not play a single game and was surprisingly dropped for the series against West Indies.
But an injury to Shikhar Dhawan led to another recall although he did not play any game against West Indies either. He managed to retain his spot for the ongoing series too but was not named in the playing game for the first two games. But on Saturday, India finally gave him a chance to show his potential on the field.
Well, it was an interesting return to the playing eleven for Sanju Samson. He started his innings on the best possible note by dispatching Lakshan Sandakan for a maximum. But the very next ball he faced from Wanindu Hasaranga, he was trapped in front of the wicket and had to depart.
Reason behind promotion:
While the experiment to send Sanju Samson at number three failed, India went on to win the game by 78 runs. After the game, senior opener Shikhar Dhawan explained the reasons behind India’s decision to play Sanju Samson as well as Pandey.
Samson was surprisingly included ahead of Rishabh Pant who is being tipped to play the role of wicketkeeper-batsman in the T20 World Cup. Shikhar Dhawan said that the team-management wants to try out different players till the T20 World Cup.
“I’m sure the management wants to try players. Today also we wanted to try other players who haven’t batted in the series and give them a fair chance because we’re only left with five T20 (actually over 12) games.
“As a team, we wanted to give chance to everyone and that’s why they’ve been rotating players. Till World Cup comes, everyone is refined and know their job as well.
“It is more to give players (time), like how Sanju Samson came in today (at number 3), then Shreyas (Iyer), so they can get more time in the middle, because it is a totally different field when you are batting in the match and having more overs and so that was the reason today,” he added.