Despite being an assuring presence behind the stumps, Wriddhiman Saha has contributed with the bat ever since he replaced MS Dhoni as the wicket-keeper in Test matches. Gone are the days when wicket-keepers did not know how to bat and his good keeping skills might not be enough to keep Saha in the Test team for long.India's Test captain Virat Kohli was recently effusive in his praise for Saha and backed him to score runs. "I really like Wriddhi's attitude as he is a very hard working cricketer. He is willing to do anything that the team requires. He is a brilliant wicketkeeper and very good with the bat as well. He has got a very good first-class record as he has got lot of runs in pressure situations," Kohli said.But truth be told, that great first-class record has not translated into good performances at the international level and time might just be running out for the promising Bengal keeper.With Saha feeling the heat, let us look at 5 players who are threatening to take his place in the Indian team.Special Mention: 29-year-old Sheldon Jackson of Saurashtra is one of the untested wicketkeepers India can try out in the near future. Jackson started out the current Ranji season with a 97 but has produced a string of disappointing scores after that.
#5 Sanju Samson
With a first-class batting average of 44.70, Sanju Samson at the age of 20 is India's brightest prospect as a wicket-keeper batsman. Some in the state of Kerala where he hails from already consider him to be the next Tendulkar. The young Samson should not get carried away with such comparisons as he has a good head on his shoulders.
Samson has been doing consistently well in first-class cricket and is also currently the captain of the U-19 team. He, however, rose to limelight for a series of commendable and punchy performances in the IPL which made the world sit up and take notice. Over the last few IPL seasons, he has been one consistent bright spark for the Royals.
With age on his side and no dearth of talent or confidence, it is just a matter of time until Sanju Samson breaks into the Indian team. Only time will tell if he can do justice to his talent and cement his position as a long-term replacement to Saha.