2022 Asia Cup: Fans lament Sanju Samson's exclusion

It was earlier confirmed that Sanju Samson was not named into the 15-men squad for India's 2022 Asia Cup campaign. Fans have since expressed disappointment over his exclusion.

They argued that Samson deserved a spot since he had been performing well. They also lamented the fact that Samson was not even included as a backup player. Instead, Dinesh Karthik and KL Rahul will serve as backups.

“India does not deserve player like Sanju Samson Hard luck champp,” a fan wrote on Twitter.

“It's pure Injustice to Sanju Samson by BCCI selectors side lining him every now & Then!” another fan said.

Samson’s exclusion came after Rahul and Virat Kohli confirmed they would return to the squad. Other than Samson, Ishan Kishan is excluded as well. Kishan was India’s backup opener in the 2021 T20 World Cup.

Kishan remained at the top of the order until the away series against Ireland in June. Since then, his appearance with the XI has become less frequent. The 24-year-old recorded 543 runs in 19 T20I matches with an average of 30.16 and a strike rate of 131.15.

Inconsistent selection

Samson’s selection has been inconsistent. He was not part of the South Africa series but was included for two T20Is against Ireland and the first T20I against England.

Then he was excluded again in the next two matches against England. He returned in the ODIs against West Indies before replacing Rahul in the T20Is.

Regardless, Samson will be one of the players in the upcoming ODIs against Zimbabwe. He will be looking to improve his chances to be recalled for the T20 World Cup despite Kohli, Rahul, and Rohit Sharma being at the top order.

Samson's career

Samson debuted for team India in 2015 and was considered the successor of former India captain MS Dhoni. While his talent has been considered exceptional, he did not have the best start in his international career.

The Kerala-based batsman has been frequently in and out of the Indian team and never played three consecutive T20I matches while representing India. Samson proved his capabilities when he was allowed to bat at number 4 for India, playing against Ireland.

Throughout the years, India has given more chances to Rishabh Pant and Kishan despite their poorer statistics compared to Samson.

Samson was included in Team India’s ODI squad after Rahul contracted COVID-19, preventing him from travelling to West Indies.

Fans praised Samson for his save in the final over of the first ODI match between India and West Indies at the Port of Spain in Trinidad. He performed diving save while keeping wickets in the final over when West Indies needed 15 runs, with Mohammed Siraj claiming four wickets. With the save, he helped India win the match with a thin margin of three runs.

Samson became one of the most loved Indian cricketers after his stellar performance in the fifth T20I against West Indies, in which India won the series 4-1. Fans chanted his name, to which he responded by saluting them, which was recorded in a video that went viral overnight.

"In a very short span Sanju Samson have made a strong fan base across the world,” a fan said.

In the six T20I matches he played this year, he scored 179 runs, averaging nearly 45 while striking the ball at 158.40.

Gian Chacko

Sports enthusiast with love for cricket, football and sports in general. Holds 10+ years of following and writing about sports and lately also betting.