Sanju Samson is peerless when it comes to talent quotient and Shane Warne hopes the flamboyant Rajasthan Royals batsman has a consistent 2020 Indian Premier League (IPL) and establishes himself across formats in the Indian team Ipl 2021 schedule .
The clamour to have the enormously gifted Kerala batsman play regularly for the national team has grown over the years and knocks of 74 (32 balls) and 85 (42 balls) have only amplified the noise.
Warne, the IPL-winning former Royals captain and now a team mentor and brand ambassador believes the day is not far away.
”I hope Sanju has a consistent tournament this year. If he has a consistent tournament this year, I think you will see him representing India in all forms of the game,” Warne told PTI in an exclusive interview.
The legendary Australian has been sold by Samson’s maturity and his evolution as a batsman, taking way more responsibility in this edition.
“He’s (Samson) such a talented player. I have seen a lot of talented cricketers in my time but watching Samson bat in the nets, being around him, speaking to him over the years and now watching him evolve, I mean he is something else.
“He is a very special talent and I hope he hit the international stage very soon,” said Warne, who is currently in the UAE.
Warne is also impressed seeing Steve Smith open the innings in T20 cricket for the first time and he has started well with two half-centuries in as many games.
“I liked it, him (Smith) coming to open the innings,” opined Warne on Smith’s 69 and 50 in the first two games.
“I am always a big believer in your best player having the opportunity to face the most amount of deliveries, so for me you know Jos Buttler, Steve Smith and Sanju are one, two and three, respectively. That’s how I would be doing,” said the king of leg-spin bowling.
In fact, Warne feels that Smith and chief coach Andrew McDonald shouldn’t tinker with the top three, come what may.
“Steve Smith and Andrew McDonald might have different ideas but I would always want my best players facing the max number of balls. We’ve got so many good players who could play so many different roles, but I personally like Steve Smith at the top,” Warne added.
Add Ben Stokes to it and Warne feels Royals would be a formidable opposition on any surface. Stokes is set to miss the first part of IPL due to his father’s illness but a possibility remains that he would be able available during the later stages.
“Hopefully, Ben Stokes would play a part this year, he’s a big loss and our thoughts are with him, but you know, add Ben to the team that played the other night and it looks a very very, good side,” Warne added.
For someone who understands the tough job that leg-spinners have in this high-scoring format, Warne is impressed with the way Shreyas Gopal and Rahul Tewatia bowled, keeping the evening dew in mind.
“I mean it wasn’t easy with the dew, on the ball in a small ground in Sharjah. I thought he (Shreyas) bowled into the pitch nicely, I really liked what I saw and I am looking forward to working with him and Gopal again.