'Don't compare Suryakumar Yadav with Sanju Samson…': Kapil Dev shuts critics, backs captain Rohit, coach Dravid

Mar 24, 2023 09:21 AM IST

Kapil Dev said one shouldn't compare Sanju Samson and Suryakumar, feels the team management is doing the right thing by backing a player of SKY's calibre.

Suryakumar Yadav and Sanju Samson have been trending on social media for the last couple of days. The former because of his unheard-of hat-trick of first-ball ducks in the three-match ODI series, the latter because of not getting enough chances despite Surya's repeated failures in ODIs. Suryakumar Yadav's T20I and ODI numbers are chalk and cheese, to say the least. In T20Is, he is yet to put a foot wrong after making his debut in 2021. In ODIs though, he averages a mere 24 and has crossed the fifty-run mark only twice in 21 innings. Samson, on the other hand, averages 66 in the 11 ODIs that he has got.

Suryakumar Yadav and Sanju Samson
Suryakumar Yadav and Sanju Samson

Isn't it unfair to Samson? Despite performing well in the sporadic chances that he has got, he is not even in the ODI squad as India prefers to back Suryakumar on the basis of his T20I numbers. On the flip side, doesn't SKY, the No.1-ranked T20I batter, deserve a decent run after all that he has done in the shortest format?

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It's a never ending and difficult debate. Legendary India cricketer Kapil Dev said one shouldn't compare Samson and Surya. India's 1983 World Cup-winning captain said the team management is doing the right thing by backing a player of SKY's calibre.

"A cricketer who has played so well will always get more chances. Don't compare Surya with Sanju Samson, it doesn't seem right. If Sanju goes through a bad phase then you will talk about somebody else. This should not happen. If the team management has decided to back Suryakumar Yadav then he should be given more chances. Yes, people will talk, give their opinion but ultimately it's the management's call," Kapil told ABP News.

After getting dismissed for golden ducks in near-identical fashion in the first two ODIs while batting at No.4, SKY was sent in at No.7 in the third and final ODI in Chennai. Even that did not work as the 32-year-old was cleaned up by left-arm spinner Ashton Agar for another first-ball duck.

Kapil said shuffling of the batting order is nothing new in ODIs and captain Rohit Sharma and coach Rahul Dravid must have had some reasons for using SKY at No.7.

"It's very easy to talk after the match is finished. Maybe the idea behind sending Suryakumar at No.7 was to give him an opportunity as a finisher. This (shuffling of the batting order) is nothing new in ODIs. This has happened many times before. Yes, at times it can happen that a batter's confidence is dented if he has been dragged down the order. But the onus rests on the player to tell his captain that 'I can handle myself in the top order.' The coach and captain must have taken the decision with particular thinking," he added.

After India lost the decider by 21 runs, captain Rohit Sharma did clear that SKY was originally slated to bat at No.5 but they decided to break the chain of right-handers by sending left-arm Axar Patel and keep SKY for later so that he can tackle the spinners.

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