Since MS Dhoni’s retirement from international cricket, the debate over who should take up the wicket-keeping responsibility for India has been a hot topic.
Although it looks like Rishabh Pant is the choice of the selectors at the moment, and he has been given the opportunity to get into the role for some time now, there have been some arguments in favour of others, particularly Sanju Samson.
This of course, is also due to the failures of Rishabh Pant with the bat in the few opportunities that he has been given.
When IPL 2020 began, Rajasthan Royals batsman Sanju Samson was on fire in the first two games in Sharjah. He scored 74 off 32 with one four and nine sixes against the Chennai Super Kings in the first match and followed it up with 85 runs off 42 balls with four boundaries and seven sixers against Kings XI Punjab.
Soon after those two innings, there were many former cricketers including Shane Warne and Gautam Gambhir among others expressing shock that the batsman had not been given much chance to represent India.
Former England batsman Kevin Pietersen on Friday joined the debate as well, and said that Sanju Samson would be a better option to give the Indian wicket-keeping gloves to as compared to Rishabh Pant.
Pant needs to show some consistency, says Pietersen
“Rishabh Pant is someone who disappoints because we expect a lot from him. In order to get that India tag and play international cricket, you need to show some consistency and get better.
“But I am seeing the same player that I saw the year before, the year before and the year before that. For as long as he has played, he has been inconsistent.
“And when I see Sanju Samson, I see somebody completely different. The dedication and commitment that he put into, turning up for this year’s IPL that mighty impressed me. That actually got me having him ahead of Rishabh Pant,” Pietersen told Star Sports during a pre-match show.
“Just purely from a diet basis, fitness basis and a dedication space, Samson seems to say ‘I want to go out there and do everything in my power to play cricket for India’.
And he has got runs after runs. He has failed a couple of times but what you need is that dedication which he has for international cricket because when the going gets tough, the tough get going. You want tough people for international cricket,” the Englishman added.