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  5. 'Knew I wasn't close to being selected': Sanju Samson on his T20 World Cup call-up, 'special' IPL season

'Knew I wasn't close to being selected': Sanju Samson on his T20 World Cup call-up, 'special' IPL season

Sanju Samson, who got a nod ahead of the likes of KL Rahul and Jitesh Sharma as India's second wicketkeeping option for the T20 World Cup, admitted that he was far from being considered and had to put in a season to remember in the IPL, which he did as he achieved first-ever season fo 500 runs.

Edited By: Anshul Gupta @oyegupta_ New Delhi Published on: May 29, 2024 13:59 IST
Sanju Samson smashed an unbeaten 71 off 33 against the
Image Source : BCCI/IPL Sanju Samson smashed an unbeaten 71 off 33 against the Lucknow Super Giants, three days before India's T20 World Cup squad was announced

Rajasthan Royals skipper and Indian wicketkeeper-batter Sanju Samson has admitted that he had to get a terrific season of IPL to be in the reckoning for India's T20 World Cup squad. Samson, who averages 18.7 in T20 internationals in 22 innings, hasn't had the greatest of returns playing for India. With Rishabh Pant having a tremendous season on return after 14 months, there was only one spot left for the second wicketkeeper and Sanju Samson had competition from the likes of KL Rahul, Ishan Kishan and Jitesh Sharma.

However, Samson leading the Royals pulled off his best season yet, scoring 531 runs averaging 48 and stroking at 153. Before the squad announcement, Samson's number were even better as he had 385 runs to his name in just nine innings, averaging 77 and striking at 161 and the last innings he played against the Lucknow Super Giants, where he helped the Royals chase down 197 after his side was 78/3, he let out a roar after finishing the game off. More than 71* off 33, the way he constructed his innings and took his side to a win stood out.

Speaking to Star Sports about his selection, Samson said, "It [T20 World Cup call-up] was very emotional one. It was something which I didn't expect much actually to be very honest. I knew that I was not very close to being selected. I knew that I had to do something really special in this IPL to get there. That's where I decided, I have to put my phone away. I think I am totally cut out from my phone. My phone is off from last 2-3 months. I have to completely focus on my game.

"I have to completely give myself the best chance to go out there and perform and win games for my team, so that it can help me get into the Indian team for the World Cup. Getting selected to the world's best T20 team and that also for a World Cup actually deserves something special," he added.

Samson registered his first-ever 500-plus season in the IPL and even though he may not be the first-choice wicketkeeper ahead of Rishabh Pant, he has expressed confidence that he will be able to perform whenever the team needs him to.

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