RCB vs RR, IPL 2021: "It's either nothing or everything with Sanju Samson" - Gautam Gambhir flags RR skipper's consistency issues

Sanju Samson (PC: BCCI/IPL)
Sanju Samson (PC: BCCI/IPL)
Rudransh Khurana

Former India opener Gautam Gambhir has flagged Sanju Samson's perennial consistency issues. Gambhir on Thursday said that the Rajasthan Royals skipper's fluctuating returns are rooted in an issue in his mindset and lack of adaptability.

Speaking to ESPNcricinfo, Gautam Gambhir cited the examples of Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma to emphasize that the returns of great players don't frizzle away after one good knock.

He noted that Sanju Samson either scores good half-centuries or gets out cheaply.

"If you look over the last many IPLs, consistency is an issue. He starts very well but it's either nothing or everything. So your graph shouldn't fluctuate this much. A good player's graph always remains in the middle. If you look at Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli or AB de Villiers, who are all brilliant players, if they make 80-odd runs they don't score 0, 1 or 10 in the next few innings but contribute with a knock of 30 or 40-odd runs. But if you look at Sanju Samson's graph, either he scores an 80-90 or nothing at all. If there is so much fluctuation then somewhere it's an issue of the mindset," said Gautam Gambhir.

Gautam Gambhir further added that a batsman needs to change his tempo according to the opposition and the conditions at hand.

The former cricketer also said that after playing so much cricket in all formats, it's high time that Sanju Samson brings about a change in his mindset.

"You can't bat with the same tempo all the time. You have to change it with conditions and opposition. It's not necessary that you'll get the same conditions every time. If he wants to mature - which he should because he's been playing for so long in the IPL, has played in international cricket and so much of domestic cricket - then he will have to change his mindset and way of thinking," said Gambhir.

Sanju Samson scored a magnificent hundred in the Rajasthan Royals' IPL 2021 opener. However, the 26-year-old has collected just five runs in the next two games, getting out within the first 10 deliveries on both occasions.

This is in line with a trend that has paralleled Sanju Samson's IPL career. The right-hander has got out within the first 10 balls in nine out of the last 17 innings he has played in the IPL.

His inconsistency has hurt his franchise as they made a wooden-spoon finish last season and are now reeling at the seventh spot in the points table.

It would be unfortunate if Sanju Samson didn't play more for India: Gautam Gambhir

Gautam Gambhir
Gautam Gambhir

Concluding his remarks, Gautam Gambhir hoped that Sanju Samson learns from Virat Kohli, who has contributed to his team even with a lower strike rate.

He added that it would be 'unfortunate' and Sanju Samson's own fault if he didn't play for India in the future.

"You are now the captain. It's not important to bat at the same strike rate all the time. We have seen Virat Kohli in this tournament; his strike rate is not that great because the conditions at hand make it difficult to maintain that strike rate which is possible at Chinnaswamy or Wankhade. Sanju Samson also needs to realize that when he made a hundred, he should have backed in with some contributions in the following games. I hope he brings that consistency because he has all the talent and if he can't play for India then it will be unfortunate and perhaps his own mistake that he can't work on his consistency," signed off Gautam Gambhir.

Sanju Samson will be seen in action against Royal Challengers Bangalore on Thursday, April 22.

Edited by Arjun Panchadar

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