IND vs BAN: How Sanju Samson and Shivam Dube earned T20I call-up


India named their Test and T20I squad for the upcoming series against Bangladesh. While the Test squad is on expected lines, there are a few surprises in the T20I squad. Virat Kohli will be resting from the series with Rohit Sharma assuming the mantle. The selectors have also offered chances to batsman-wicketkeeper Sanju Samson and all-rounder Shivam Dube. Here’s how Samson and Dube staked a claim in the T20I lineup.

Sanju Samson – Making a double claim

The 24-year old batsman from Kerala has been knocking the Indian doors for a long time. A perennial performer in the IPL, Samson has two centuries to his credit in the premier T20 league. His wristy strokes and aggressive intent despite him being wiry built make his batting a delight to watch. This year, Samson struck second of his two IPL centuries and ended with 342 runs in 12 innings at a strike rate of 149.

The Keralite played in India A side for the last two 50-over matches against South Africa A. Samson returned with a decisive 91 which helped India secure the series 4-1. In the 2019 Vijay Hazare Trophy, the batsman maintained his run flow. After racking up 183 runs in the first five matches, he more than doubled his tally with a blistering 212 not out against Goa, which is the highest individual score in tournament history. The knock brought Samson back into the international reckoning and with Virat Kohli resting, he has an opportunity to make a name for himself. He has played a T20I previously for India, it was against Zimbabwe in 2015.

Shivam Dube – a fairytale rise

Dube Samson

Shivam Dube

In Mumbai’s local T20 tournament, Shivam Dube made a name for himself with towering sixes. Cementing himself in the Mumbai’s red-ball team, Dube dished out spectacular performances in the 2018-19 Ranji Trophy. He ended as the second-highest run-getter and the highest wicket-taker for his team. On the eve of the IPL auction, Dube smashed five sixes in five balls against Baroda to establish his T20 credentials.

Royal Challengers Bangalore snapped up Dube in the auction for a hefty price tag of five crores. However, the franchise failed to provide him with regular opportunities. In four IPL games, he faced only 33 balls and bowled only 10 deliveries in total. In the 2019 Vijay Hazare Trophy, he played a blazing knock of 33 not out from 13 balls against Goa. Then taking on Karnataka, Dube scored a miraculous 118 from just 67 balls. In the chase of 313, Dube kept Mumbai alive single-handedly. With Hardik Pandya ruled out due to injury, India have opted to give a maiden call-up to this Mumbai all-rounder.