Date & Time: Wednesday, September 18, 19:00 IST
Venue: Punjab Cricket Association IS Bindra Stadium, Mohali, India
A confident India will take on the definite underdogs in South Africa at Mohali
After a washed-out first match, the action begins at Mohali. With no forecast of rain, we hope this will get the subcontinent action going.
While the new captain De Kock is a great batsman, it will be very odd not to see FaF at the top and leading from the front. He will be sorely missed as SA will look to move on from the disastrous showing at England. Both teams will consider this series as the beginning of the preparation for the T20 WC next year, and the stakes will be high for the players who get a chance in this tour. David Miller might get a crack given his familiarity with the venue.
India meanwhile has a problem of plenty and it is a question of who makes the cut. We think Shreyas Iyer will get a chance over Manish Pandey, but Manish has a great record at this ground. Deepak Chahar’s performance and the venue (which might produce movement early on), might help him get a slight edge over Navdeep Saini. There is a lot of question about who will make it between Krunal, Jadeja, Washington Sundar, and Rahul Chahar. Also, a big question is whether India will play with 3 pacers (apart from Hardik). Do follow us after the toss for the team updates.
We have seen this ground a lot in the T20s and a lot of Indian players must be quite familiar with the ground. Not a ground to give a large advantage to spinners, we expect scores of 170 to 190 as batsmen will be able to hit clean through the line.
Quinton de Kock
Without FaF, De Kock becomes the mainstay of the SA batting lineup. He has a high PPM of 51.49 and an MDTA of 1.4 in T20Is. Without Bumrah to trouble him, the only other bowler who poses a real threat to him is Deepak Chahar, against whom he has scored 51 of 34 balls, with 2 wickets.
He has scored a century against SA in T20Is, and he was one of India’s top performers in the CWC match against South Africa. Given that he opens at the top of the order, he is a must-have in most teams.
What can we say about Virat that hasn’t been written already? In the last 5 matches, his MDTA is 1, and his PPM is 42.6 which is low by his standards (56.72 since 2017).
Devastating with the bat, more than handy with the ball, Hardik brings great balance to the Indian side. With a PPM of 64.6 in the last 5 matches, Hardik is too good a player to be kept out of most lineups. The only concern is the MDTA of 1.67, but we expect him to shine against SA thanks to his decent H2H record.
With 41 points per game, Rabada is the main strike bowler. The conditions will favor him heavily, and he will be very effective in death. He has made it to the Dream Team in each of his last 5 matches and he is no stranger to the subcontinent. Simply put, he is a must-have.
Once he gets going, there is no stopping him. However, in the last 5 matches, his PPM is 18.2 and he has no DTAs to his credit. He is too good to be completely dropped and that is why he is an X-Factor in today’s game.
There is a lot of discussion about Ravi Shastri’s comments and we wonder what impact this will have on Rishabh. Will he become a shell of himself or will he display better shot selection? We can only wait and watch on this category-defining the X-factor player.