After a successful T20I series, team India is ready to cross swords against South Africa in the 3-match ODI series. The first ODI will be played at Ekana Sports City, Lucknow on the 7th of October, Thursday. Team India secured the T20I series with two early wins before the Proteas managed to make it 2-1. In the 3rd match, South Africa beat back strongly as the batters and bowlers equally contributed to the game. Rilee Rossouw’s scintillating century was a notable one in the game. But with the series win, team India is confident to go for the T20 World Cup.
When it comes to the ODI series, India has decided to go with a completely different team. The only reason behind this is to give their star players a bit of rest ahead of the World Cup. So, an entirely different squad is going for the ODI series and India is ready to check their bench strength in the series. This also shows the depth the hosts have that they can almost choose 15 different players and still be competitive at the highest level.
Team India will be led by Shikhar Dhawan with the assistance of Shreyas Iyer. Dhawan earlier led the squad for the West Indies series and sealed the series 3-0. Now Dhawan will lead the young Indian squad which consists of some new players like Rajat Patidar and Shahbaz Ahmed.
Shubhman Gill and Sanju Samson will get a chance to once again prove themselves as they have found themselves a bit short of opportunities even after playing pretty decently. Shubman Gill established his white-ball expertise in the series against Zimbabwe and West Indies, scoring three half-centuries and a career-best 130 in his last six ODIs for India. Sanju Samson was India’s A team captain for New Zealand A ODI series and as a high scorer in the series, he sweep the series 3-0. He was also part of the Zimbabwe series creating a big impact on the team.
However, all eyes will be on Deepak Chahar, who has made a successful comeback from an injury and will be considered as one of Jasprit Bumrah’s replacements in India’s T20 World Cup squad.
South Africa is not sending any of their players to Australia for the T20 World Cup early, so will have their full-strength squad for the ODI series. Bavuma is expected to be a replacement for injured Rassie van der Dussen, with the rest of the middle order – Aiden Markram, Heinrich Klaasen, and David Miller – likely to remain consistent.
The Proteas have generally had a brilliant record in the bilateral ODI series against India on Indian soil. So, playing against the bench players will once again raise their hope. South Africa more or less has a full-strength squad for the series. David Miller and Quinton de Kock are in good form which is a big boost to the Proteas ahead of the T20 World Cup. In this series, they would be hoping to find the form of the pacers to strengthen their chance to show a better performance in Australia.
A major concern for Proteas is their skipper Temba Bavuma. He has seemed a bit out of sorts these days and he will look for a turnaround in this series. With two ducks and a score of 3 from the last T20I series, Bavuma was struggling after a comeback from injury. Bavuma needs runs and needs it fast to make an impact in the coming World Cup.
South Africa will be playing the ODI series for the World Cup Super League Points and they are desperate to get a series win. They are getting themselves as close as possible to automatically qualifying for the World Cup next year. Doing it against the second-string Indian side will be a positive for Proteas.
India and South Africa played a 3-match ODI series earlier this year, in February and South Africa sweep the series 3-0. The two teams are pretty evenly matched in the case of batting, but the Proteas have a bit more experience in terms of ranks. On the bowling level, the guests have a strong hand. With a chance of rain in the matches, let’s wait and watch how the teams adapt to the situation and play their best.
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