India vs South Africa: Aiden Markram looking forward to India challenge
Vijiyanagram, Sep 26: South Africa batsman Aiden Markram believes his team might be carrying "a bit of baggage" from their last trip to India, but they will not harp on about the conditions when they face Virat Kohli's men in the three-match Test series beginning October 2.
The Proteas suffered a 0-3 loss in the Test series last time they toured India in 2015. It was also their first overseas series loss since 2006. Markram was only 20 and had not yet made his international debut in 2015.
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"I remember watching that series a few years ago and it looked incredibly difficult," ESPNcricinfo quoted Markram as saying.
"I'm sure there's a bit of baggage that certain players that were on that tour might still be carrying but that's completely fine. I think it's never an easy tour coming to anywhere in the subcontinent, let alone India. It's full of challenges, but if we can conquer those challenges it will be really rewarding."
Markram, who has played 17 Tests so far and scored 1,358 runs at 43.80, believes the environment in the dressing room is good and they are looking forward to the challenge.
"The guys are positive and upbeat and we're maintaining a really good language in the change-room, a really strong language. At the end of the day, we're not going to harp on about conditions, we pretty much know what to expect and we just need to get the job done," he said.
Markram scored a superb 161 for the 'A' side in their second four-day game against India A in Mysore. The visitors played only one innings and scored 400, as they drew the match, thanks largely to centuries from Markram and Wiaan Mulder (131).
He is confident he can apply the lessons learnt from the A series to the three Test matches. "From a personal perspective, it was nice to spend time out in the middle. I think the wickets we get will be a lot different to the wickets we got in the A series," Markram said.
"In the field as well, it was nice for us as fielders to be on our feet for long periods of time and for our bowlers to bowl plenty of spells in these hot conditions. I took a lot from the A side games and I'm ready to go in the Test matches," he added.
South Africa are beginning their campaign in ICC World Test Championship against India, who are currently at the top spot in the points table.