Mumbai, May 2: Young Kerala batsman Sanju Samson said that the over in which he and Karun Nair were dismissed off successive deliveries bowled by Mitchell McClenaghan was the turning point of his side Rajasthan Royals' eight-run defeat in the IPL cricket match against Mumbai Indians here.
"The over in which I got out changed the game," said wicketkeeper Samson, who powered his way to a brilliant 76 off 46 balls to take Rajasthan closer to victory before falling to McClenaghan in the 18th over.
New Zealand pacer McClenaghan got rid of Nair for a first-ball duck and then Sri Lankan sling-arm specialist Lasith Malinga dismissed Deepak Hooda in the next over to arrest the Royals' winning strides.
"Today it was my turn to go up and perform for the team. I am always ready to bat up the order or anywhere my team wants me to bat," Samson said at the post-match press conference last night about his promotion to number three ahead of teammate Steven Smith.
Samson defended Australia's man-in-form Smith, who scored 28 in 20 balls before falling to McClenaghan, and said their partnership worth 46 was a very important one in Royals' run-chase.
"He (Smith) cannot play well in every game. He tried his best it was not his day. He gave good support. If you have a fine batsman at the other end builds up your confidence. My partnership with him though small was important," he said.
Samson said though he had not fired with the bat earlier in the tournament, with 27 as his best against Sunrisers Hyderabad at Visakhapatnam, he continued to have complete support from his team leadership group and coaching staff.
"Talking about my season, it was a bit tough for me. Each and every staff in our team, including Rahul Dravid (mentor), Paddy Upton (head coach), Zubin Bharicha (director of cricket) and Monty Desai (coach), have supported me.
"It's one of the best teams I have played for in my career. In other teams when you do well people are around you. In our team even if you don't do well you can see so many people coming to you and talking positive things to you," he added.