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India eye rewriting history in South Africa as Test series begins today Test Series
Image Credit: UNI

India eye rewriting history in South Africa as Test series begins today

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 26 Dec 2023, 12:53 pm

Centurion/UNI: After the white-ball cricket, India are back on the red-ball quest as India, especially the senior pros Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, will be looking to alleviate the heartburns of losing the ODI World Cup finals by rewriting history in Test series in the Rainbow nation.

Out of the 23 Tests India played in South Africa, they won only four but never the Test series. Therefore, all eyes will not be on the senior pros, but also the youngsters after Head Coach Rahul Dravid spoke about giving them the much-needed encouragement.

The calibre of Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill and Shreyas Iyer, who never played a Test match in South Africa, will be tested against the venomous attack on a bouncy track.

The onus also lies upon Captain Rohit and KL Rahul who have dismal Test average, and they would like to improve it. It is only Virat who has excelled under foreign conditions with the bat as he averages 50 plus in the Rainbow nation.

Rahul notched up a century and a fifty in the last visit to South Africa as an opener, but his form vanished and runs dried up. This time, in all likelihood he would bat in the middle in Ishan Kishan's absence, and it will be interesting to see whether he comes up trumps.

Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj are certainties, considering the inclement weather forecast for the first two days of the Centurion Test, and this leaves the fap open for either Prasidh Krishna or Mukesh Kumar for third slot for pacers.

Though Rahul Dravid did not give any hints on fielding both Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja, it looks like the team would prefer Shardul Thakur to bolster pace attack in South African conditions.

The Proteas have been dominant against India at home, but current batting line-up comparatively is unmatched to India batsmen who average 40 odd.

But the nemesis of India batting has been the South African pace attack. In the last tour, Kagiso Rabada picked 20 wickets and Marco Jansen and Lungi Ngidi scalped 19 and 15 wickets.

Squads

India: Rohit Sharma (C), Shubman Gill, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Abhimanyu Easwaran, KL Rahul (wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Shardul Thakur, Mohd. Siraj, Mukesh Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah (VC), Prasidh Krishna, KS Bharat (wk).

South Africa: Temba Bavuma (c), David Bedingham, Nandre Burger, Gerald Coetzee, Tony de Zorzi, Dean Elgar, Marco Jansen, Keshav Maharaj, Aiden Markram, Wiaan Mulder, Lungi Ngidi, Keegan Petersen, Kagiso Rabada, Tristan Stubbs, Kyle Verreynne (wk).

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