Sanju Samson played in the ODIs against the West Indies. © Getty
Sanju Samson will replace KL Rahul in the Indian T20I squad on their ongoing tour of the West Indies and the US, the BCCI confirmed on Friday (July 29). A board release stated that Rahul, who has recently contracted Covid-19, has been advised by the medical team to rest.
Updated India Team for 5 T20Is vs WI:Rohit Sharma (C), Ishan Kishan, Sanju Samson, Suryakumar Yadav, Deepak Hooda, Shreyas Iyer, Dinesh Karthik, Rishabh Pant, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, R Ashwin, Ravi Bishnoi, Kuldeep Yadav, Bhuvesh Khanwar Kumar Patel, Arshdeep Singh.
Rahul was originally named in the squad for the five-game series, subject to achievement of match fitness. The opener had been laid low by a groin injury, requiring surgery, and barred him from the entire tour of England and the home T20Is against South Africa, for which he was named captain. Incidentally, Rahul has not played international cricket since February and T20Is since the New Zealand series late last year.
The 30-year-old, who might otherwise have been a shoo-in in India’s roster for this year’s T20 World Cup in Australia, is hoping to shake off his recent injury and return to action for the Asian Cup next month and then prove his fitness and form with the home games against South Africa and Australia in the run-up to the big event.
Meanwhile, Samson, who played against Ireland in the two T20Is, was chosen for the ODIs against the West Indies and managed to score half a century in the second of those matches.