After a convincing eight-wicket victory in the opening game led by young pacers Arshdeep Singh and Avesh Khan, Team India aims to maintain its dominance under KL Rahul’s leadership.
With Shreyas Iyer joining the Test squad, a debut ODI cap is up for grabs, and the battle for the batting spot intensifies between left-hander Rinku Singh and right-hander Rajat Patidar. While Rinku is emerging as a finisher at No. 6, Patidar, a specialist No. 4, appears as a like-for-like replacement for Iyer.
The team management might opt for continuity and give Sanju Samson, playing as a specialist batter at No. 6, a fair chance before considering Rinku Singh. However, Rinku’s impressive List A record may influence the decision.
In the opening game, young left-handed opener B Sai Sudharsan made a promising debut with a silken half-century, adding depth to India’s batting.
For South Africa, the series serves as a significant white-ball test in the post-Quinton de Kock era. India’s fringe pacers exposed vulnerabilities in the South African batting lineup in the first game, and the hosts will need an improved performance in the second day/night encounter.
While the bowling department is likely to remain unchanged after Arshdeep and Avesh’s impressive show, there might be a slight tweak with the inclusion of Akash Deep in place of Mukesh Kumar, who struggled in the first game.
In the spin department, Axar Patel and Kuldeep Yadav, not part of the Test squad, will be eager to contribute in ODIs, making it unlikely for them to rest voluntarily. Yuzvendra Chahal might have to wait for his chance in the only format he has been selected for.
The second ODI promises an exciting clash as India aim to secure the series with another victory over South Africa.
India: KL Rahul (captain and wk), Ruturaj Gaikwad, B Sai Sudharsan, Tilak Varma, Rajat Patidar, Sanju Samson, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Mukesh Kumar, Arshdeep Singh, Avesh Khan, Rinku Singh, Akash Deep, Yuzvendra Chahal, Washington Sundar.
South Africa: Aiden Markram (captain), Ottneil Bartman, Nandre Burger, Tony de Zorzi, Reeza Hendricks, Heinrich Klaasen, Keshav Maharaj, David Miller, Mihlali Mpongwana, Wiaan Mulder, Andile Phehlukwayo, Rassie van der Dussen, Tabraiz Shamsi, Lizaad Williams, Kyle Verreynne.
Match Starts: 4:30 pm IST.
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(With inputs from PTI)