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Home > Sports News > Cricket News > Article > IND vs SA T20Is Young Indian pack aim for right answers in Proteas test

IND vs SA T20Is: Young Indian pack aim for right answers in Proteas test

Updated on: 09 December,2023 04:31 PM IST  |  Mumbai
mid-day online correspondent |

Suryakumar Yadav led side beat Australia 4-1 on fabulous batting tracks at home but even the most partisan Indian fan would agree that there was so much less at stake in a series that was held within 72 hours of the World Cup

IND vs SA T20Is: Young Indian pack aim for right answers in Proteas test

Indian cricket team (Pic: File Pic)

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Key Highlights

  1. India is carrying 17 players for the T20 series
  2. The clear picture ICC T20 World Cup 2024 squad will only emerge after the IPL 2024
  3. SA series in context is last big international T20 series that India play followed by AFG

A young Indian team will be asked tough questions, to which answers might not be readily available when they will clash with the Proteas in a three-match T20I series starting on Sunday.


With Hardik Pandya's unavailability till the start of IPL 2024, lead pacer Jasprit Bumrah on a break and not much clarity over Virat Kohli's and Rohit Sharma's T20I future, it won't be easy to read much into Suryakumar-led Indian side's success or failure. 


Also Read: IND vs SA T20Is: Players to score most runs


The clear picture ICC T20 World Cup 2024 squad will only emerge after the IPL 2024, with form and fitness being the main criteria. 

Suryakumar Yadav led side beat Australia 4-1 on fabulous batting tracks at home but even the most partisan Indian fan would agree that there was so much less at stake in a series that was held within 72 hours of the World Cup. Australia's core bowling attack was rested and some of the seniors were so tired that they left for home after the third game, having spent almost nine weeks in India.

The South Africa series in that context is the last big international T20 series that India play followed by one against Afghanistan in mid-January.
Even with their pace bowling mainstays, Kagiso Rabada (rested) and Anrich Nortje and Lungi Ngidi injured, the Proteas at home will be more than a handful.

Also Read: IND vs SA T20Is: Players with most wickets

Batting Combination conundrum

India is carrying 17 players for the T20 series and only three of them- Shreyas Iyer, Mukesh Kumar and Ishan Kishan are also part of the 50-over format.

There will be multiple bones of contention, the openers and No. 3, who will have to shed their archaic safety-first approach that had been India's bane in previous T20 World Cups.

Yashasvi Jaiswal has already shown that he belongs to this level and Shubman Gill is now one of the first picks across formats while Ruturaj Gaikwad after his 52-ball-100 will be that much difficult to ignore.

And herein lies the problem as Ishan Kishan isn't a great option beyond No. 4 if the troika of Jaiswal, Gill and Gaikwad bat. And at No. 4 is India's No. 1 T20 batter and skipper Suryakumar Yadav, who is the only automatic choice as far as the T20 World Cup is concerned.

Then there is the wicketkeeper's slot where Kishan, will have a stiff fight from Jitesh Sharma, who is evolving nicely as a finisher at No. 6.

There is a No. 5 slot where Shreyas, who is not exactly a slam-bang from the word "go" but an IPL skipper is expected to be challenged with short-pitched stuff by the likes of Marco Jansen, Gerald Coetzee and Andile Phehlukwayo.

But if one plays Iyer, then there would be no place for Rinku Singh, another designated finisher, who himself said on BCCI.TV, that he will be batting at No.5.

In case Kishan doesn't find a place in the top four, then Jitesh is the option at No. 6.
For the likes of Ruturaj, Jaiswal, Rinku and Jitesh, the extra bounce on offer at Kingsmead will pose a different sort of challenge as those with superior back-foot play will be paramount.

Bowling picks are easier

The Indian bowling attack was put to the sword by Australia in most games but in South Africa, the length would be doubly important as the younger crop might find it enticing to dig it in due to the extra bounce.

While there won't be Quinton de Kock in the mix anymore Heinrich Klaasen, David Miller, skipper Aiden Markram, hard-hitting Tristan Stubbs and new batting sensation Matthew Breetzske could make life difficult for Indian bowlers. While Ravindra Jadeja is the vice-captain in this series and is expected to bat at No.7, Axar Patel, who hasn't been picked for the series, will certainly be around when the squad for the marquee event is selected.

The second spinner will certainly be googly specialist Ravi Bishnoi, who is now the world's No. 1 ranked T20 spinner. Deepak Chahar, Arshdeep Singh and Mukesh Kumar are expected to be the three straight-forward pace bowling choices.

Squads:

India: Suryakumar Yadav (C), Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Tilak Varma, Rinku Singh, Shreyas Iyer, Ishan Kishan (wk), Jitesh Sharma (wk), Ravindra Jadeja (VC), Washington Sundar, Ravi Bishnoi, Kuldeep Yadav, Arshdeep Singh, Mohd. Siraj, Mukesh Kumar, Deepak Chahar.

South Africa: Aiden Markram (c), Ottniel Baartman, Matthew Breetzke, Nandre Burger, Gerald Coetzee (1st and 2ndT20Is), Donovan Ferreira, Reeza Hendricks, Marco Jansen (1st and 2nd T20Is), Heinrich Klaasen, Keshav Maharaj, David Miller, Andile Phehlukwayo, Tabraiz Shamsi, Tristan Stubbs, and Lizaad Williams.

Match Starts: at 7:30 pm IST.

(With PTI Inputs)

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