2nd T20I: In-form India face revamped South Africa in Mohali
India vs South Africa, 2nd T20I will be played in Mohali on Wednesday (IANS Photo)
- India's 1st T20I vs South Africa was washed out due to rain
- Focus on all-rounders, Rishabh Pant as India look to extend winning run
- Quinton de Kock will lead a revamped South African side vs India
After the no-show in Dharamsala, India are all set to kickstart their home season and resume their T20 World Cup 2020 preparations in the 2nd T20I of the ongoing 3-match series against South Africa in Mohali on Wednesday.
With the focus shifting to T20 and Test cricket after 2019 World Cup, India announced a relatively younger squad with fresh faces for T20I assignments.
Having not won the T20 World Cup title since the inaugural edition of the tournament in 2007, India are keen on establishing themselves as big a force as they are in other formats, in T20 cricket.
With two T20 World Cups being held between 2020 and 2021, India have a golden opportunity to improve their reputation in the shortest format of the game. Currently ranked No, 4, India would want to climb the ladder on the ICC charts with some success in the coming months.
With head coach Ravi Shastri clearly signalling for change in the T20I set-up, India have packed their T20I squad with quite a few all-rounders. While the Asian giants did find success with the combination in West Indies, a South African side, hoping for a fresh start under newly-appointed Quinton de Kock may offer the right test.
Upcoming T20Is will help in preparation for 2020 T20 World Cup, reckons #TeamIndia batting coach Vikram Rathour pic.twitter.com/lPcVDPrpW2BCCI (@BCCI) September 17, 2019
Big test for India's gamble with all-rounders
India have not picked wrist-spin specialists Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav but have handed an extended run to the likes of Washington Sundar, Krunal Pandya and Ravindra Jadeja in the T20I squad. It is evident that India are looking to add more depth to their batting by picking all-rounderers over specialist spinners.
Leg-spinner Rahul Chahar will be hoping to shine in the upcoming T20Is after getting the first taste of international cricket in West Indies.
On the other hand, the top-order has familiar faces in Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli. The trio has had a lot of success in white-ball cricket and India will be hoping their rich run of form extends to T20I format in the coming months.
Shreyas Iyer's form is a huge boost to India's middle-order that has lacked firepower in the recent past. However, concerns remain over "careless" approach from big-hitting wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant who has got a timely reminder from his head coach Ravi Shastri that he is not just letting himself down but also his team.
Meanwhile, Hardik Pandya returns to the set-up after missing the West Indies tour. The fast-bowling all-rounder becomes a crucial part of the squad, considering the upcoming T20 World Cup will be held in Australia.
With the big boys of Indian pace unit getting more time away from T20I cricket, the team management will be closely monitoring the progress of the likes of Navdeep Saini, Deepak Chahar and Khaleel Ahmed in the shortest format.
On the other hand, South Africa will be keen to put behind the memories of a disastrous World Cup campaign and start afresh. With several new faces in the team, Quinton de Kock faces a stern test against India at their own backyard.
What to expect from Mohali after Dharamsala washout
Good news for cricket fans! There is no rain threat on Wednesday in Mohali. The Punjab Cricket Association IS Bindra Stadium has always proved to be a batsman-friendly wicket and expect nothing different during the 2nd T20I. Teams winning the toss are likely to take into account the dew factor that has been common in Mohali.
India vs South Africa, 2nd T20I squads
India T20I Squad: Virat Kohli (captain), Rohit (vice-captain), KL Rahul, Shikhar Dhawan, Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Rishabh Pant (wicketkeeper), Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Krunal Pandya, Washington Sundar, Rahul Chahar, Khaleel Ahmed, Deepak Chahar, Navdeep Saini.
South Africa T20I Squad: Quinton de Kock (captain), Rassie van der Dussen (vice-captain), Temba Bavuma, Junior Dala, Bjorn Fortuin, Beuran Hendricks, Reeza Hendricks, David Miller, Anrich Nortje, Andile Phehlukwayo, Dwaine Pretorius, Kagiso Rabada, Tabraiz Shamsi, George Linde.