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The 25-year-old Indian wicket-keeper batsman Sanju Samson believes that the former Australian wicket-keeper batsman Adam Gilchrist and veteran Indian wicket-keeper batsman MS Dhoni have changed the game for wicket-keepers.
Sanju Samson, who made his international debut in 2015, has played four T20Is, including three games in this year. Talking about the evolution of the present wicket-keepers, who are now taking the batting role very seriously, Samson feels that Adam Gilchrist and former Indian World Cup-winning captain MS Dhoni are the major reasons for it.
According to Samson, Gilchrist changed the game for the wicket-keepers in the top-order batting while Dhoni changed their role in the middle-order batting.
Samson told TOI, “Wicket-keepers today are all top batsmen as well. You look around the world, most of the ‘keepers are very good batsmen. Adam Gilchrist changed the game for ‘keepers coming up the order, MS Dhoni has done likewise in the middle order.”
As wicket-keepers are taking the crucial responsibility in batting, Samson believes that it helps the team to add another special player in the team.
Samson added, “It is now almost a norm to have a wicketkeeper who is a very good top- or middle-order batsman, as it helps the team add an extra bowler or all-rounder in the team.”
Adam Gilchrist, who was a member during Australia’s victories in the ICC Cricket World Cup 1999, 2003 and 2007 editions, played 96 Tests, 287 ODIs and 13 T20Is. In his international career (1996-2008), the left-handed batsman scored 5570 Test runs (average 47.60), 9619 ODI runs (average 35.89) and 272 T20I runs (average 22.66).
Meanwhile, MS Dhoni, who led the Indian team to win the ICC World T20 2007 and ICC Cricket World Cup 2011, has played 90 Tests, 350 ODIs and 98 T20Is. The right-handed batsman, who is famous for his finishing roles, has scored 4876 Test runs (average 38.09), 10773 ODI runs (average 50.57) and 1617 T20I runs (average 37.60).
MS Dhoni’s calmness and focus in tough situations is something that has influenced me: Sanju Samson
Samson then claimed that Dhoni’s calmness and focus in tough situations has influenced him a lot of, and he wants to add this in his game.
The youngster added, “MS Dhoni’s calmness and focus in tough situations is something that has influenced me. It is something that I would like to inculcate in my game as well and be calmer and more focussed while batting.”
Samson has also opened up his point of view on the recent banning of applying saliva to the ball for the interim period. While many believe that it will take away the opportunity from the bowlers, Samson believes that it will not affect for the bowlers much in India, where the ball moves lesser, but it can affect for the bowlers much in the foreign conditions.