Two days after the end of a three-match riveting T20 series, here we go again for a three-match ODI series. India are set to lock horns yet again with the Proteas. Since the start of the year, these two sides have played a three-match ODI series, a five-match T20I fixture, a three-match T20I fixture and now are going to play a three-match ODI one.
Phew, so much cricket. And, in the larger scheme of things, this series is going to extremely important for South Africa, who are battling for an automatic qualification place for the 2023 ODI World Cup. On the other hand, India will take this series as an extended trial-and-error session, in terms of their experimentation.
Unlike most other venues, the last memory for the Indian fans at the Bharat Ratna Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee Ekana Cricket Stadium isn’t too long back. The last game at the venue was a T20I fixture between India and Sri Lanka, where the Men in Blue won by a convincing margin of 62 runs.
Ironically, the last ODI fixture at the venue was the clash between India and South Africa but it was cancelled. It is only fitting that ODI cricket at the venue returns with the two sides taking each other on. India though have never played a 50-over game here, and two out of the three times, teams chasing have won.
The average first innings score is 230, which suggests that the track will have plenty of help for the bowlers. In fact, it the spinners who have an advantage over the pacers, with 22 wickets to 18 wickets at the venue. So, expect the trend to continue on Thursday.
While you could go for the above team, you can also choose your team from Cricket.com’s Fantasy Research Centre. You can use this tool to build your team with the help of algorithms. Then, based on your preferences, the platform will guide you through creating the ideal fantasy XI.
For small leagues: Shubman Gill (c), Janneman Malan (vc)
For grand leagues: Deepak Chahar (c), Aiden Markram (vc)
Stats That Matter
- Out of the 42 wickets at the venue, 15 wickets have been picked by right-arm pacers, with 14 wickets taken by the off-spinners. There is a gulf of difference from thereon, which suggests that you should back the right-arm pacers during this fixture.
- Quinton de Kock, who starred in South Africa’s win in Indore, is South Africa’s second highest run-scorer this year, with 419 runs in the ODI format, averaging 59.86, including scoring a century.
- On the other hand, India will by ably led by Shikhar Dhawan, who leads the run charts for India in the 50-over format this year, with 542 runs, averaging 49.27.
- Shubman Gill’s numbers this year are mightily impressive, with 450 runs in just six appearances, averaging 112.5 and nearly striking at as much (111.7).
Grand League Punts
- With no Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Prasidh Krishna, the onus of picking wickets early on falls on the shoulders of Deepak Chahar. Chahar’s form against South Africa is incredible, with three wickets in the last three T20Is. In addition to that, Chahar also has scores of 31 and 54 against the Proteas, which makes him an enticing pick for the Grand League.
- Aiden Markram holds of crazy importance for South Africa. Whilst he has only played seven ODIs this year, the right-hander averages 31.4 and strikes at 95.7. In addition to that, do you remember the stat that we threw early on – 14 wickets at the venue have been picked by off-spinners – and Markram is more than a handy off-spinner.
Here are the Top ten Criclytics Projections
South Africa XI: Quinton de Kock (wk), Janneman Malan, Temba Bavuma, Aiden Markram, Heinrich Klaasen, David Miller, Dwaine Pretorius/Wayne Parnell, Keshav Maharaj, Anrich Nortje, Kagiso Rabada, Tabraiz Shamsi
India XI: Shikhar Dhawan (c), Shubman Gill, Shreyas Iyer, Rajat Patidar, Sanju Samson (wk), Shahbaz Ahmed, Shardul Thakur, Deepak Chahar, Kuldeep Yadav, Avesh Khan, Mohammed Siraj