After winning the T20I series by 1-0 under the leadership of Hardik Pandya. India started their campaign for the 50-over World Cup in the first match of the three-match ODI series against New Zealand at Eden Park, Auckland. The Kiwi captain Kane Williamson invited the India team to put runs on the scoreboard.
Skipper Shikhar Dhawan and Shubman Gill provided a good start to the inning with a brilliant 124-run opening stand. After the dismissal of the two, Shreyas Iyer took the responsibility to lift the inning coming at no.3. Rishabh Pant and Suryakumar Yadav failed to contribute anything to the scorecard.
Indian batsman Sanju Samson was benched throughout the whole T20I series but given a chance in the first ODI. He came to bat at no.6 and played his part by contributing 36 runs off 38 balls including four boundaries and took out the team from a problematic situation with a 94-run partnership with Iyer. However, India lost the match by seven wickets even after scoring 306 runs as they were playing with only five bowlers.
‘It’s tough on Sanju Samson, but we need a bowler’: Murali Kartik
Samson was benched again in the second ODI on Sunday which brought a lot of criticism around Social media for the team management and the coaching staff. Former spinner Murali Kartik defends the stan-in head coach VVS Laxman amid the ongoing criticisms.
“You want bowling options, unfortunately for India, the top 6 that we have here, the top 6 none of them bowl. And I said this before as well, it’s tough on Sanju Samson. We all keep talking about how good he is,” Kartik was quoted as saying.
“He comes and gets a lovely score. He bats really well in the series against South Africa. Yes, the feeling is to keep him going, and then that’s right. But now he misses out in spite of scoring runs in the previous game and you get Deepak Hooda to bowl, which is fine.
“But as Ashish said, if you are picking him as a batter from the get-go and then getting him to bowl, that’s a different thing. But for him to come now and then the others to miss out.. look Shardul Thakur has been among the wickets. It’s a tough ask. I know VVS Laxman has got a lot on his plate, he is a fair man.” He added.
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