India v South Africa, First T20I at Dharamsala: Preview
At Dharamsala, we call can expect the rain to be the winner of the contest between India and South Africa. It was pouring hard earlier in the day, and things looks like only worse.
South Africa might be boosted by the record they hold against India in India but this team looks nothing like the those which gave hosts a run. Having said that, Virat Kohli and co. will not take this team lightly and would love to win them all.
For both the teams though, this series can very well be a testing series, a series that could help a lot of youngsters to put their name up, leading to the World Cup.
South Africa: The visitors will be aware of Rohit Sharma's vulnerability against Junior Dala and might back him ahead of Andre Nortje. Also, this is a huge opportunity for Tabraiz Shamsi to finally show his worth after being overshadowed by the veteran Imran Tahir.
It will certainly be interesting to see how Temba Bavuma sheds his "red-ball specialist" tag and mould himself as a fine limited-overs cricket. Definitely, a huge test for him. Also for the captain Quinton de Kock when it comes to leading the side. It is a known fact that De Kock always loved to play against and in India, and it cannot come as a surprise if he scores well.
The wicketkeeper-batsman has a lot of puzzles to be fixed especially in the middle-order. Andile Phehlukwayo, Dwaine Pretorius and uncapped George Linde might play today depending on what combination South Africa is looking on to. Van der Dussen who made heads turn in the World Cup will have to play a key role as well.
Probables: Quinton de Kock (c), Rassie van der Dussen, Reeza Hendricks, Temba Bavuma, Andile Phehlukwayo, David Miller, Dwaine Pretorius, Kagiso Rabada, Junior Dala/Anrich Nortje, Beuran Hendricks/ George Linde, Tabraiz Shamsi.
India: India during the contest against West Indies, went in to open the bowling with Washington Sundar and the youngster did relatively well. Kohli might be tempted to follow the same here to set de Kock up early. Having said that, Rahul Chahar looks like a pretty good option too and it is a positive headache for India.
After being benched for both the Tests, Rohit Sharma will be looking fresh and will be raring to go considering the fact that he already has a hundred here. Shreyas Iyer looks fixed for the number four spot and as the World T20 preparations begin, he will be watched closely. The Pandya brothers will fill in the middle-order and will play crucial roles in the team.
Death-over specialist, Deepak Chahar, will team up with the young pacer Navdeep Saini and the combination is something to look forward to. Of course, there will be eyes on Rishabh Pant who is yet to answer his critics.
Probables: Virat Kohli (C), Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Rishabh Pant (wk), Shreyas Iyer, Ravindra Jadeja, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Washington Sundar/Rahul Chahar, Deepak Chahar, Navdeep Saini