Former Pakistan spinner Danish Kaneria is of the opinion that Sanju Samson should lead India in the limited-overs series against Sri Lanka, and believes that the Kerala lad should be groomed to be a long-term captaincy candidate. As things stand, Dhawan is the favorite to lead India against SL.
Fixture congestion is never ideal in any sport, but a clash of two tours has seen fringe players in India be presented with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Earlier this month, the BCCI announced that no all-format players will be available for the limited-overs tour of Sri Lanka and declared that, instead, white-ball specialists will be sent to partake in the tour, which is set to comprise 5 T20Is and 3 ODIs. While it’s evident who will travel to the Island Nation as a part of the Indian contingent, it remains a mystery who the captain will be.
Shikhar Dhawan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Hardik Pandya currently are the front-runners to captain the side, but former Pakistan spinner Danish Kaneria has come up with a left-field suggestion. Kaneria is of the opinion that Sanju Samson should be appointed the skipper for the Sri Lanka tour, and believes that the 26-year-old has the attributes to be a successful leader.
"Shikhar Dhawan is likely to get India's captaincy in Sri Lanka. Not Shaw, Samson… but Dhawan. But if it were up to me, I would have to go with Samson,” Times Now quoted Kaneria as saying.
Not just for the Sri Lanka tour, Kaneria believes that team India need to groom Samson to be the long-term successor of Kohli. Samson has captained both Kerala and Rajasthan Royals, and Kaneria believes that India need to start preparing for the post-Kohli era, which he feels should be ruled by Samson.
“We should be ready, that in future, if Virat is willing to step down as captain, then he should be the next in line. We have to be ready that if Kohli isn't around, we need to groom someone. So I would go with Samson but Dhawan remains a strong contender," Kaneria said.
Samson was appointed the captain of Kerala for the 2020/21 domestic season, and, under his leadership, the side reached the quarter-final of the Vijay Hazare Trophy. The 26-year-old also skippered Rajasthan Royals in the now-suspended IPL 2021 season, in which RR were placed 5th at the time of suspension.