Mumbai Indians’ (MI) bowling coach Shane Bond explained that the move to promote Daniel Sams to No.3 in the chase against the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) was an attempt to try something different since they had nothing to lose. He, however, admitted that the Australian all-rounder hasn’t grabbed his chances with the bat.
Mumbai beat Chennai by five wickets on Thursday’s (May 12) IPL 2022 match at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
Chasing 98, MI sent Sams into bat at No. 3 after Ishan Kishan perished cheaply. Sams could not impress though and was trapped lbw for 1(6) by Mukesh Choudhary.
At the post-match conference, Bond was asked about the motive behind the curious move. Replying to sportskeeda query, he said:
“Daniel probably hasn’t shown the talent that he has with the bat. We spoke at the start of the year (season) about, perhaps, taking the opportunity to put him up the order and see what he can do. He hasn’t grabbed the opportunity at the moment. We saw through the BBL this year that he came in at No. 4 and put in some good performances. It’s a move that didn’t pay off. Because you are at the bottom of the table, you have a chance to try something different like that.”
While he failed with the bat, Sams walked away with the ‘Player of the Match’ honor for his excellent figures of 3 for 16. He dismissed Devon Conway and Moeen Ali in the first over, before adding the scalp of Ruturaj Gaikwad as well.
Praising the left-arm seamer, Bond stated:
“He has done really well. Obviously, I have got a relationship with Daniel that goes back a long way. We worked together at Sydney Thunder for three years (when Bond was the coach), so we’ve got a close working relationship. He would admit that he was disappointed with his performances earlier in the tournament. But he’s worked really hard to come back. He’s taking key wickets for us at the start of the innings. He bowled that last over against Gujarat and was unbelievable.”
“He’s a quality player. His bowling is getting better and better.”
Sams conceded 35 runs in an over in the match against the Kolkata Knight Riders where Pat Cummins hammered the joint-fastest IPL fifty. He has made an incredible comeback since then and has been among IPL 2022’s most impactful pacers.
“You want to give guys more than one game” – Bond on possibility of changes in MI playing XI
Mumbai made two changes to their playing XI on Thursday. Birthday boy Kieron Pollard was dropped in favor of Tristan Stubbs while Hrithik Shokeen came in for Murugan Ashwin. Asked if more changes can be expected in the upcoming games, Bond replied:
“I am not sure is the short answer. Even though we have made changes today, you still want to give guys more than one game. I don’t think it’s a case even in the position that you are that you play 25 members of the squad. You try to identify opportunities for players who deserve it through their training performances and perhaps can carry some performances into next year. We’ve got a couple of games to go. It’s up to the players to grab that opportunity.”
Mumbai’s remaining IPL 2022 matches will be against SunRisers Hyderabad (May 17) and the Delhi Capitals (May 21).