Former India spinner Maninder Singh feels that upcoming Zimbabwe tour and he would like to see Sanju Samson keeping the gloves in the three-match ODI series. The BCCI has picked a young team for the tour as KL Rahul was named the captain as he regained full fitness. Meanwhile, the competition for the wicketkeeper’s slot will be between Samson and Ishan Kishan.
Samson has played three ODI matches this year in which he scored 72 runs at an average of 36, while Kishan only got a chance to play one ODI this year. He scored 26 in the match against West Indies. With the return of Rahul, the opening slots are almost booked for him and veteran Shikhar Dhawan which makes things difficult for Kishan to get the place as India usually play him as an opener in the XI. On the other hand, Samson has batted in the middle-order in ODI series against West Indies.
Replying to a News18 Cricketnext query at a select media interaction organised by Sony Sports Network, Maninder said that he would prefer Samson over Kishan as the first-choice wicketkeeper for the Zimbabwe series as he is highly impressed with the 27-year-old.
“Difficult choice because both these players (Sanju Samson and Ishan Kishan) are brilliant players and it’s not going to be easy for the coach and the captain to pick the first choice-wicketkeeper. I am very very impressed with Sanju Samson because he has got a lot of time. When he plays on the backfoot, you can make out that the batsman has a lot of time," Maninder said.
The veteran spinner further said he wants Samson to get more opportunities to show some consistency and he will be one of the players to watch out for him on Zimbabwe tour.
“So I would actually see Sanju Samson getting many opportunities before you start thing that he is not performing consistently so he doesn’t get opportunities in international cricket. My eyes will be on Sanju Samson," Maninder said.
India’s squad for 3 ODIs: KL Rahul (Captain) Shikhar Dhawan (vice-captain), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shubman Gill, Deepak Hooda, Rahul Tripathi, Ishan Kishan (wicket-keeper), Sanju Samson (wicket-keeper), Washington Sundar, Shardul Thakur, Kuldeep Yadav, Axar Patel, Avesh Khan, Prasidh Krishna, Mohd Siraj, Deepak Chahar.