Steve Smith has declared Virat Kohli the best ODI batsman in the world. Smith, who was removed as the Australian captain after the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa in 2018, was answering the questions of the fans in his Instagram story while traveling from Southampton to Old Trafford yesterday.
Apart from heaping praises on Kohli, Smith also talked about two of the young, emerging Indian superstars Sanju Samson and KL Rahul. The fans asked Smith to describe both Samson and Rahul in one word.
While Smith described Samson as “talented”, he called Rahul “gun”. Smith had the experience of watching Rahul from close quarters earlier this year in India when the Australian team had travelled to India for a 3-match ODI series.
Rahul had batted at no. 5 in that series, despite being an opener, and smashed Australia’s world class attack to all corners of the ground. Australia had won the opening game of the series, but still failed to clinch the series as India beat them in the last two games on the trot.
Smith has actually had the opportunity to watch Sanju Samson from close quarters as well, as both of them have been playing for Rajasthan Royals for a number of years now.
Samson has played a lot of match winning knocks for the Royals, a few under Smith’s captaincy as well, but he has not been able to establish himself in the Indian national team yet. He has played a couple of games here and there, but has failed to make an impact at the international level.
However, the Indian cricket pundits rate Samson very highly and believe he will become a match winner for India in the coming years and it seems Smith also holds the same opinion about his Royals’ teammate.
Smith and Samson are going to be the pillars of the Rajasthan Royals middle order in the upcoming IPL, given the fact that both are excellent players of spin and the UAE pitches will suit the spinners.