Nov 29, 2022, 16:29 IST

Indian cricket: Simon Doull weighs in on the Sanju Samson – Rishabh Pant debate


The short tour of New Zealand is all but over with the final ODI to be played on Wednesday. 1-0 down in the 3 match ODI series, India will want to win the final game to be played at the Hagley Oval at Christchurch.

Most of the players fly back to India as the big names return for the Bangladesh series starting next month. Two names, who have hogged the headlines is Rishabh Pant and Sanju Samson. The two are in differing forms of their lives as the race for the spot behind the stumps in white ball cricket is heating up.

The story as it happened –

Sanju Samson has garnered a lot of fans with his performances during 2022. The 28 year old from Kerala did not play any of the 3 T20 games during the New Zealand tour. Samson played the 1st ODI at Eden Park and scored 36 before being benched for the 2nd game on Sunday. This move angered a lot of Indian fans as Deepak Hooda came into reckoning for the player from Kerala.

Simon Doull believes Samson deserves a chance –

Former Kiwi pacer turned media pundit and commentator, Simon Doull is a huge name in India. He has been part of the commentary panel for many seasons of the IPL and Doull has thrown his weight behind Sanju Samson. The former Kiwi pacer has time and again spoken highly of the talent Samson has during the IPL. Speaking to Cricbuzz, the former pacer said “Rishabh Pant’s record is a decent sample size. He has played just under 30 games and only averages 35, the strike rate is good. But Sanju in 11 games is averaging 60-something. And I don’t think he is any less of a wicketkeeper. I just think he deserves an opportunity as well”

Pant’s loss of form a concern –

Rishabh Pant has been under the pump with the bat in hand during the latter half of 2022. Pant began with a spectacular century in test cricket against South Africa in January. Pant then scored a century in test and ODI cricket during the tour of England.

The 25 year old though has fallen off the radar with the bat thanks to his patchy form in T20 Cricket. The team though has persisted with Pant considering his game changer tag. Speaking about this to Cricbuzz the former Kiwi international said “The Rishabh Pant vs Sanju Samson debate is an interesting one for me. There is so much talk about Rishabh Pant, and how he is the future. But in white-ball formats, he hasn’t quite done it. Unbelievable Test player, and he is a shoo-in in Tests as the wicketkeeper-batter, no issue with that. But is he the best white-ball keeper batter? I am not convinced”