Team India were expected to make a change after their seven-wicket loss to New Zealand in the ODI series opener in Auckland on Friday. India were criticised for playing a bowler short. But with the axe falling on Samson to make way for all-rounder Deepak Hooda, fans were left fuming at captain Shikhar Dhawan and head coach VVS Laxman. Some of them expressed their anger on Twitter, while few made a statement trough special gesture at the ongoing FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar.

Samson was part of the three-match T20I series after the T20 World Cup. With a new-look India set to take on New Zealand, Samson was a certainty in the playing XI. But was benched through the entire series, Captain Hardik Pandya later explained that it was a “unfortunate” case and his snub was due to “strategic reasons”.

Samson remained part of the tour for the ODI series that followed and was finally given an opportunity where he scored a decent 38-ball 36 and stitched a crucial 96-run stand alongside Shreyas Iyer albeit in a losing cause. India later dropped him to pick Hooda in a bid to add to their bowling depth.

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Fans were left infuriated at the call as they slammed Team India for the team selection with few others showed support for Samson at the ongoing FIFA World Cup by raising special banners, a picture of which was shared by Rajasthan Royals, the team Samson leads in IPL.

After the match on Sunday in Hamilton, Dhawan had explained the reason behind dropping Samson.

“We wanted the sixth bowler to come in, so Sanju Samson missed out and Hooda came in. And Chahar was picked because he can swing the ball really well. A few of our guys are resting but this side is still strong, shows the depth of our squad,” he explained.

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