Cricket World Player of the Week - Sanju Samson
It is not often that the Player of the Match award goes to a member of the losing team, but such was the impact of Sanju Samson's 63-ball 119 on captaincy debut that the Rajasthan Royals skipper deserves all the accolades.
It was a big day in office for Sanju Samson as Rajasthan Royals faced Punjab Kings in their first match of the Indian Premier League 2021 at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. It was for the first time that Samson was captaining an IPL franchise.
Samson was replacing Steve Smith as the captain of Rajasthan Royals, no less, and the pressure must have been enormous. But, such is the calibre and temperament of the boys these days, at least in the IPL, that no stage seems big enough for them.
Lo and behold, Samson played a true captain's knock, smashing 119 off 63 deliveries after coming in to bat at number 3 on the fourth ball of the innings with the score at 0/1.
Chasing 222, Rajasthan needed a serious knock to run Punjab Kings close, and this is exactly what transpired.
The wicketkeeper batsman struck 12 fours and 7 sixes while batting at a strike rate 188.89 and would have won it for Rajasthan had his loft over extra cover travelled a couple of metres more on the very last ball of the match.
Despite Rajasthan losing by 4 runs, Samson's whirlwind was recognised as a special one as he received the Player of the Match award on IPL captaincy debut.
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