Rajasthan Royals’ mentor Shane Warne believes that if Sanju Samson has a consistent Indian Premier League (IPL) this year, then he will definitely play for India in all formats of the game. Samson has played two matches in this year’s IPL so far and has managed to score 159 runs. In the first match against Chennai Super Kings, the right-handed batsman scored 74 runs while in the second game he scored 85 runs while chasing a target of 224. In an interaction with ANI, Warne opened up about his expectations from the Royals’ campaign this year and he also gave an insight as to how his role as a mentor will be different in IPL 2020.
Talking about Samson, Warne said: “Sanju Samson, I mean I have been saying it for a long time now, Sanju should be playing all forms of the game for India.
“He is such a quality player, he’s shown that class again in the first game and I hope he has a consistent tournament this year.
“If he has a consistent tournament this year I think you’ll see him representing India in all forms of the game.
“He’s just such a talented player, I’ve seen a lot of talented cricketers in my time but watching Samson bat, in the nets being around him, speaking to him over the years and now watching him evolve I mean he is something else.
“He is a very special talent and I hope he hits the international stage very soon,” added the 51-year-old.
Warne has been involved with the Royals since the inception of the IPL and he also led the Rajasthan Royals to the title win in the inaugural season.
The former Australian spinner was exceptional in grooming youngsters like Ravindra Jadeja and many Indian cricketers like Mohammad Kaif, Yusuf Pathan have talked about the leadership skills of Warne.
“I feel like I’ve got a spiritual connection with the Royals. Back in 2008, it was just such a wonderful time, and every now and then you connect and get involved with something that is super special and is magic,” Warne said.
“The squad we had in 2008 produced some magic and lifetime friendships. I love the Royals and have always been a Royals and grateful for the opportunity to be back working with the Royals in this capacity and I hope it continues.
“I hope there’s always a role for me here at the Royals because I’m passionate and just love Rajasthan Royals very very much,” he added.
When asked whether the Royals’ squad looks balanced as compared to other seasons in the past, Warne said: “I think the squad looks great, some great young talent, some experienced players, good variety in the bowling attack, power hitters and manipulators of the ball.
“Some good players of spin and pace, a good combination of left and right-handers. So, I think the squad is there, it’s about them being able to deliver.
“So if we can deliver our skills and I feel it could be the Royals’ year this year in 2020.
“Hopefully, Ben Stokes would play a part this year, he’s a big loss and our thoughts are with him but you know add Ben Stokes to the team that played the other night and it looks a very very good side,” he added.
The Steve Smith-led Rajasthan Royals have won their opening two matches of the tournament so far. The side outclassed Chennai Super Kings by 16 runs and gained an improbable four-wicket victory over Kings XI Punjab.
Talking about his role as a mentor, Warne said: “My mentor role, it’s a bit different this year. I’ll be sitting in the stands, watching the games, not in the dugout.
“So, I won’t have anything to do with anything actual in-game. I would be watching just like anybody else and then I’ll be sitting with Andrew McDonald and Steve Smith after each game, see if I saw anything, talk to them and listen to them talk and their ideas and add some of my thoughts.
“So that part and then being around training, motivating the group, helping out individuals in the team, trying to get the best out of them and helping Andrew McDonald and Steve Smith in any which way possible way,” Warne signed off.
Topics mentioned in this article