LUCKNOW: Indian captain Rohit Sharma on Wednesday advised young batters aspiring to represent the country and currently playing in Ranji Trophy to keep scoring runs and not worry about selection as opportunities are bound to arise.
India U-19 World Cup-winning skipper Yash Dhull and Mumbai’s Sarfaraz Khan are among those who have scored centuries in the opening round of Ranji Trophy.
“All I can tell them is keep scoring runs and the opportunity will arise as it has for (Hanuma) Vihari and Shreyas Iyer, Shubhman Gill and all those guys, who are part of the test team now,” Rohit said on the eve of the first T20I against Sri Lanka here.
“A lot of these guys, I know, you got to keep scoring runs, you got to keep your head down and keep doing your job, that is what I can tell them at the moment and that is all we can expect them also to do.
“And if there will be a time the opportunity will arise, pretty sure that they will also be focussing on, getting more and more runs rather than worrying about if I am getting selected for not and things like that,” he added.
Stressing that selection of playing XI depends on a lot of factors, Rohit said that his team will look to do well in the two Tests against Sri Lanka, which will be played next month in Mohali and Bengaluru.
“A lot of things depend on what sort of combination we have at the moment in our particular squad and what pitches we are playing on, the opposition, and things like that.
“So a lot of selection depends on that as well moving forward. But like I clearly said there are only three Test matches.
“For the two Test matches we have announced the team and there is one Test which will be played in England. We will see about England later.”
According to the skipper, he was happy that players got an opportunity to play the Ranji Trophy.
“All these guys who have got an opportunity to play Ranji Trophy, I am very happy that they at least got to play Ranji Trophy, which is the most critical from their perspective. I hope we see more and more performances in the next two games as well,” he added.
“Samson has got talent”
Sanju Samson has been drafted into the squad and it would be interesting to see whether the management gives him a go in the playing XI.
Rohit praised Samson, saying that the right-handed wicketkeeper-batter is extremely talented.
“Speaking of Samson, I think you know that guy has got talent man. Whenever we have seen him bat in IPL and all of that, he has just produced an innings where everyone goes over the moon watching that inning,” Rohit said.
“He has got the skill-set to succeed. Now that is the whole point about this sport, a lot of people have skill-set, have talent, but it is how you utilise them is the most critical part and I think, it is up to Sanju to understand how he want to utilise the talent and how he can maximise it.
“Because as a team, as a team management, we see lot of potential, we see lot of talent and we see lot of match-winning abilities in that individual,” elaborated the skipper.
Rohit also lauded Samson for the variety of strokes he plays, especially his back-foot shots.
“I hope we give him that confidence when he gets playing for us, and whenever he gets an opportunity I hope he understands that and definitely he is under consideration, which is why he is part of this team.
“His back-foot play is superb, some of the shots you must have seen during the IPL, the pick-up pull, the cut shots, standing and delivering over bowler’s head.
“Those kinds of shots are not easy to play and I believe when we go to Australia, you need those kind of shot-making ability and Samson does have it in him. I just hope that he utilises his potential to the maximum,” added Rohit.
Rohit also said that pacer Mohammed Siraj was available for selection.