Sreesanth and Sanju Samson. (Photo Source: Twitter and IPL/BCCI)
The inaugural IPL champions, Rajasthan Royals failed to make the playoffs in the ongoing Indian Premier League 2023, finishing fifth on the table with 14 points. Royals had made it to the finals of the IPL in 2022 but failed to produce consistent performances in 2023 despite a strong start; Royals had won four of their first six matches with a good run rate but faced four losses in the next five games as their batting line-up had several dismal outings.
Samson finished the season with 362 runs in 14 matches, and fans and veteran cricketers alike were disappointed with the captain’s batting performances as compared to how he fared in the 15th edition of the league. He batted well in a few games but wasn’t able to maintain his batting form throughout the entirety of the season.
S Sreesanth, former India pacer, who played with Samson for their state team Kerala, also said that India’s batting icon Sunil Gavaskar urged the RR captain to give himself some time at the crease during the IPL 2023. Samson, on the contrary, adhered to his own batting approach without sticking to Gavaskar’s advice.
Gavaskar sir told him, give yourself at least 10 balls: Sreesanth
“I support Sanju because he played under my captaincy in U-14. In the past 4-5 years, when I see him as a cricketer, I’ve always told him to perform in first-class cricket, not just IPL. Produce consistent performances. Ishan Kishan, and Rishabh Pant – both were and still are ahead of him. Pant is not there, but he will make a comeback. I met him recently, he firmly believes he can come back within 6-to-8 months.
“But in this IPL, the way Sanju got out in 2-3 matches straight, Gavaskar sir told him, ‘give yourself at least 10 balls. Read the wicket. We know you have a lot of talent, even if you have 0 runs in 12 balls, you can score 50 in 25’. When RR lost in one of their last matches in the league phase, Sanju said, ‘no, my style is to play like this only’. I couldn’t digest that,” Sreesanth told Star Sports.