Mumbai: Team India look to extend their 1-0 lead in the three-match series against South Africa in Bengaluru. After the first match at Dharamsala was washed out and India won the second match quite convincingly, the third match is considered to be quite important for the Africans if they want to avoid a whitewash.
Against beating a fairly new-look South African side that seems to lack the resources required to counter the home team's firepower, India will surely fancy their chances of a similar result, at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium.
The South Africans had no answer to Kohli's batting at Mohali's IS Bindra Stadium in the second T20I, and with the next game being hosted at a ground where he is too familiar with, the Indian captain will be eyeing another good outing.
In the previous match, all the departments clicked for India. With the new ball, Washington Sundar and Deepak Chahar, who are pretty new at the international level did not give the vibes of being inexperienced at the international level and bowled well. Chahar took two wickets, but his economical bowling resulted in a number of false shots by the South African batsmen, in turn leading to wickets.
Onto India’s batting, the team management would have been relieved to see Shikhar Dhawan amongst the runs. Rohit Sharma meanwhile returns to Bengaluru, a venue where he smashed his first double century in ODI cricket and will look to make it count on a wicket that aids his stroke play after an off day at Mohali.
Shreyas Iyer along with skipper Virat Kohli guided the team home after another Rishabh Pant failure (4 off 5 balls). Pant’s failure with the bat has been under scrutiny and time is now running away from the Delhi batsmen to prove his weight in the Indian side.
As per the AccuWeather report, there is a 30-40 per cent chance that it will rain in Bangalore, and that would mean, there could be some interruptions during the match.
Moreover, the rains will also affect the nature of the pitch. Generally, Bangalore’s M Chinnaswamy stadium is best suited for the batsman, but, due to rains, the toss winning captain might prefer to bowl first as the rain would make the batting easy towards the end. So, the toss winning captain might elect to bowl first.
The third match may be Rishabh Pant’s last chance at redemption after a very poor outing in recent games. The fans have started demanding that Pant should be sacked from his position in Team India. Even though there is no doubt that the youngster is talented, such a long drought of runs is never a good thing for a budding cricketer.
In terms of team news, there should be no changes to the playing eleven of either side.
India: Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli (c), Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant (wk), Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Washington Sundar, Deepak Chahar, Navdeep Saini
South Africa: Quinton de Kock (c/wk), Reeza Hendricks, Temba Bavuma, Rassie van der Dussen, David Miller, Andile Phehlukwayo, Dwaine Pretorius, Bjorn Fortuin, Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje, Tabraiz Shamsi