Home > Features >

Sanju Samson’s quick rise from young prodigy to the fringes of Team India is a great sign

Sanju Samson impressed everyone with his performances with both bat and gloves for the Rajasthan Royals during IPL 2013 © IANS
Sanju Samson impressed everyone with his performances with both bat and gloves for the Rajasthan Royals during IPL 2013 © IANS

It has been roughly a year since Sanju Samson from the backwaters of Kerala took everyone’s breath away with his sparkling stroke-play and nimble wicketkeeping for Rajasthan Royals in the IPL.  Now, at the age of 19, he has been picked up by the Indian selectors in the Provisional 30-man squad for the ICC World Twenty20 2014 in Bangladesh. Bharath Ramaraj has more….

When the 19-year old Sanju Samson, with a crisp angling of the willow, essayed his first half-century in an Indian Premier League (IPL) game against Royal Challengers Bangalore at Japiur last year, the quaint charms of watching batsmen who played with pristine grace from another era flooded to one’s mind.

Now, that was just one IPL game, where the standard of cricket on display is arguably not the greatest. But the oozing self belief and a touch of class in that match took everyone by surprise. He had already won plaudits in the tournament for his nimble glove-work too. Who can forget his surgical-like wicketkeeping skills against Kings XI Punjab? When Rahul Dravid says someone is a ‘special talent’ he can’t be bad. Samson certainly has come a long way after being dropped from the Kolkata Knight Riders’ set-up after the 2012 season.

In a matter of few months, after being showered with praise, he is now selected in the provisional Indian squad for the ICC World Twenty20 2014 tournament in Bangladesh.

Now, Samson may not make it into the 15-member squad that would take on the rest of the cricketing world in the coveted tournament, but even if he doesn’t, he will keep knocking at the doors of the selectors in the years to come. Actually, it has to be said that the selectors can plump for him in the final squad, as his game is well suited to the shortest form of the game. If needed, he can purely play as a batsman.

Even if we go by his performances in the domestic circuit for his state of Kerala, it is clear that his showing in the IPL wasn’t a mirage in the desert. He averages 43.88 in First-Class cricket. Yes, there can be occasions in his career when he may welter through a narrow lane of mediocrity, but if he keeps his head still on his young shoulders, we are bound to witness more good days from the gift-wrapped cricketer.

Ironically, it was S Sreesanth, allegedly involved in IPL 2013 spot-fixing controversy, who is said to have taken him to the Rajasthan Royals’ trials. Even Kerala coach Sujit Somasunder is believed to have tipped off Rajasthan’s captain Rahul Dravid about the wonder boy from Kerala.

Samson comes from an old school of batting. He seems to pick the ball early and there is none of those fancy trigger movements on view, as he doesn’t move until the ball is in the air. His feet, his willow and his body seems to instinctively know where they should be and he plays with a still head. All of it is a hallmark of a fine batsman. It can sometimes be difficult to judge a cricketer on the basis of the IPL, but at the age of 19, Samson has it in him to glow brightly in the higher rungs of the game.

Samson’s coach Biju George said to Times of India, “Sanju never complains and is always keen to improve his game. He initially had a problem playing the spinners.”

Sanju Samson, the second son of a former police constable has charted a remarkable journey in his brief career. Hopefully from India’s perspective, he won’t get carried away with the success, but continue to work hard on his game and elevate it to towering peaks.

ICC World T20 2014 schedule: Match time table with venue details

(Bharath Ramaraj, an MBA in marketing, eats, drinks and sleeps cricket. He has played at school and college-level, and now channelises his passion for the game by writing about it)

Zimbabwe Triangular Series, 2014

Aug 31, 2014 (13:00 IST)   at Harare

India tour of England 2014

Sep 2, 2014 (15:00 IST)   at Birmingham

Zimbabwe Triangular Series, 2014

Sep 2, 2014 (13:00 IST)   at Harare

Zimbabwe Triangular Series, 2014

Sep 4, 2014 (13:00 IST)   at Harare

India tour of England 2014

Sep 5, 2014 (15:00 IST)   at Leeds


Pakistan tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Aug 30, 2014  at Dambulla

SL won by 7 wkts (D/L method)

India tour of England 2014

Aug 30, 2014  at Nottingham

India won by 6 wkts

Zimbabwe Triangular Series, 2014

Aug 29, 2014  at Harare

South Africa won by 61 runs

Zimbabwe Triangular Series, 2014

Aug 27, 2014  at Harare

South Africa won by 7 wkts

Bangladesh Tour of West Indies, 2014

Aug 27, 2014  at Basseterre, St Kitts

No result


Aaron Finch's record 156 vs England in T20I


Alastair Cook looks ahead to 3rd ODI at Nottingham

Zimbabwe vs Australia Live Cricket Score, Zimbabwe Tri Series 2014 Match 4 at Harare: Australia reeling at 97 for 5

India tour of England 2014: Team India remains unbeaten under Ravi Shastri

Ambati Rayudu has to make every opportunity count if he is to play in ICC World Cup 2015

Sri Lanka vs Pakistan 2014 3rd ODI at Dambulla: Highlights

MS Dhoni records most stumpings in international cricket during India-England 3rd ODI at Trent Bridge

Australia Australia and South Africa in Zimbabwe 2014 England England vs India England vs India 2014 India India tour of England 2014 India vs England India vs England 2014 Pakistan South Africa Sri Lanka Sri Lanka vs Pakistan 2014 Zimbabwe Zimbabwe Triangular Series 2014

Jason Roy included in England squad for T20 against India

Alec Stewart: India’s approach to one-day a lesson for England

Michael Clarke: ICC World Cup 2015 winner will be world’s best side

Stuart Broad expects to be fully fit in time for ICC World Cup 2015

India vs England 3rd ODI: Alastair Cook defends England’s approach

Suresh Raina, Virat Kohli’s fortunes in 3rd ODI against England reveal cricket’s funny side

Zimbabwe Triangular Series 2014: Australia vs Zimbabwe 4th ODI key battles

Clive Lloyd: 22 less-recounted facts about the West Indian legend

India tour of England 2014: Team India remains unbeaten under Ravi Shastri

Statistical review of batsmen with two or more consecutive ducks from ODI debut

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

667 Posts | 6 Fans

10 Most Unbeatable Records in Cricket

Traditional healer responsible for bringing Ebola to Sierra Leone — scientists

Jharkhand conversion: Police seize 36 SIM cards and 15 mobile phone from Tara Shadeo’s husband

NGOs pursue education for all

Could your dentist’s office give you HIV or Hepatitis B?

Did you know: Salman Khan’s father and Farah Khan’s mother were lead pair in a 1963 film!

Sony Xperia Z3, Xperia Z3 Compact, Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact and more to be announced at IFA

Xiaomi Redmi 1S to go on sale tomorrow at 2PM for 2,000 Flipkart First subscribers

International programme in Animal Husbandry

Ganesh Visarjan 2014: A glum Ameesha Patel finds it hard to let go of her Ganpati- view pics!

North Korea slams UK TV show on its nukes as ‘hideous farce’

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here