A crackerjack of a match that went down to the absolute wire saw South Africa defeat England by a solitary run, in East London. The two teams will now travel to Kingsmead, in Durban for the second T20 International on Friday (Feb 14th).
Ground details and team combination
Kingsmead has hosted three T20 Internationals since the start of 2015 and while the average run rate is a fairly high 8.1 in those games, bowlers have also come into play. They have picked up a wicket every 17 balls, which is the third-best in any ground in South Africa during the time period.
As is the case with most South African grounds, the pace bowlers have been more effective here spinners. They have picked up a wicket every 17 balls as compared to spinners who have a strike-rate of 26.6.
Among the different bowler types, left-arm pacers and left-arm orthodox spinners with a strike-rate of 15 have been the most successful here. Leg-spinners too have done fairly well. The likes of Adil Rashid and Tabraiz Shamsi could be considered for this game. You could also look at going with Beuran Hendricks or Sam Curran in your setup.
On his day, Jason Roy is one of the fiercest batsmen going around in world cricket and in case he gets stuck in, like he did in the first T20I, runs are going to flow and quickly. He smashed a 38-ball 70 in East London and with a strike-rate of 172.20 in T20Is over the last two years, Roy will look to inflict more damage.
Eoin Morgan is your quintessential T20 player. He seems to have all the time in the world while playing his shots and is a master at manoeuvring fields. He showed that feature in the first T20i where without playing a shot in anger he walloped to a 34-ball 52. Morgan enjoys the pace and bounce and the Durban surface should suit his style of play.
Probably South Africa’s most important player across formats, Quinton de Kock seems to be unfazed with the additional captaincy duties. He looked in in glorious touch in the ODIs and backed it up with another with another quick-fire knock in the first T20. De Kock has a strike rate in excess of 150 against England in T20Is, his best among all teams he has played, is another reason why he should be in your side.
Injuries might have kept him out of international cricket for long stretches but now that he is back, a leaner, fitter Lungi Ngidi looks the part. The fast bowler has returned 28 wickets in 18 T20 innings since the start of 2018 striking every 13.3 balls. He was excellent in crunch situations in the first T20 and will hope for similar returns as South Africa look to close the series.
Quinton de Kock, Jason Roy (c), Temba Bavuma, Eoin Morgan (vc), David Miller, Ben Stokes, Andile Phehlukwayo, Chris Jordan, Beuran Hendricks, Adil Rashid, Lungi Ngidi.