In his cricketing career, Sanju Samson had experienced one too many swings of ups and downs. In an interview with Gaurav Kapoor on Breakfast with Champions, wicketkeeper batter Sanju Samson discusses his career path from making his senior India debut at the age of 19, returning to cricket after five years, and being named as Rajasthan Royal's captain in the Indian Premier League (IPL).
In the IPL 2022 mega auction, the RR picked the batter for Rs 14 crore as their first retained player after appointing Samson as their captain before the season.
Rahul Dravid, the head coach of the Indian national team, also played an influential role in the 27-year-old's career. He wrote down every conversation he had with the legendary Indian batter in his diary.
I batted for two days at the trials, one of the most special moments in my life. I have never batted like this in my life. Every time I made a shot, I heard from behind, "Shot Sanju," and it was really magical. Samson recalled that before the trials, he told him you had been doing well on the domestic circuit and that he was extremely eager to see you. It was his debut IPL season with the Royals that ranked among the biggest moments of his life.
"In my first or second match of the season, Rahul sir was the opener and I came one down. As soon as I heard I had a license to hit, I hit the ball, which went for four. Sanju took his time and tossed three or four balls before Rahul came and encouraged him. My next ball was a boundary off the bouncer, and Samson advised me to keep going.
A stylish batter was bought by Delhi Capitals (now Delhi Daredevils) in 2016, when Rahul Dravid joined the franchise as a mentor.
Afterward, he became a coach of the Delhi Daredevils. I was joined by Karun Nair, Shreyas Iyer, Mayank Agarwal, and Rishabh Pant. Every youngster was excited when he told us that they would play for the Indian team. When I was with him for three to four years, I covered everything," Samson said.
"Everything in my notebook is still written. My next step was to go back to my room and write down what he said," Samson explained.
Furthermore, Sanju spoke about the incident when he was dropped from the Indian cricket team and revealed what all went through his mind afterwards. In his own words: "After I was dropped from the Indian cricket team at the age of 19, I had self-doubts about my ability to play cricket and worried that I would be dropped from my state team as well."
Having the chance to bat against Shane Warne was Samson's childhood dream. In June, the legendary cricketer passed away. Warne returned as the Rajasthan Royals' mentor in 2020, which gave Samson the chance to ask him to bowl a few deliveries.
Shane Warne was a special person. No matter what our memories of him are, whatever days we know about him, they were exceptional. Spending just one hour with him would provide you with a lifetime's worth of wisdom. This is the type of person he was, and he lived his 52 years like a King. The ideas he came up with were brilliant," Samson said.
After six wins in ten games, Sanju Samson's Royals are third in the points table. On May 7, they will take on Punjab Kings.