Xtra Time Web Desk: The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Wednesday named Vidarbha wicket-keeper batter Jitesh Sharma as a replacement for injured Sanju Samson. Samson was ruled out of the remainder of T20 series against Sri Lanka after he hurt his knee while fielding near the boundary ropes in the first T20I at the Wankhede stadium.
Jitesh Sharma’s inclusion in the Indian T20 squad was out of the blues as no one ever expected the Punjab Kings wicketkeeper to get an India call up. But with Rishabh Pant’s accident and KL Rahul’s unavailability, the cricketer from Vidarbha will join the Indian squad for the remaining two T20Is against the Sri Lankans.
Jitesh plies his trade with Punjab Kings in the Indian Premier League and has the reputation of a big hitter in domestic cricket. He made an impressive debut in IPL against Chennai Super Kings last season when he scored a 17 ball 26 runs knock. His highest score in the cash rich league is 44 off 34 balls against Delhi Capitals. The 29-year-old in his brief IPL career has played 12 matches and scored 234 runs.
Jitesh has been one of Vidarbha’s mainstays in limited-over cricket, where he mostly bats in the top order. An impressive show in 2015-16 Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy saw him getting picked by Mumbai Indians during IPL 2016 auctions for INR 10 lakhs. He failed to break into the MI playing XI which boasted the likes of Quinton de Kock and Ishan Kishan.
During the IPL 2022 mega auction, Punjab Kings showed an interest in him and brought him at his base price of INR 20 lakhs.