India vs South Africa: Why spin-friendly surfaces can be double-edged sword for Team India - Meet Proteas effective tweakers

Hindustan Times

Hindustan Times

Author 2019-09-29 21:43:28

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India’s home Test season is about to begin and hence, a lot of interest will be given to the pitches on offer. Unlike several other previous Indian team, this current side under Virat Kohli has quality fast bowlers in their arsenal which could have an impact on the nature of the 22-yard. However, Jasprit Bumrah has been ruled out of the series and this puts a lot of focus on the spinners. R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja remain match-winners in home conditions and hence, will be Virat Kohli’s biggest weapon.

Having said this, if the pitches do offer considerable assistance to spinners, even the Indian batting will be under the pump. In the recent past, the famed batting order has not had the best times against the turning ball and South Africa have two quality spinners in their side.

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Keshav Maharaj, the left-arm spinner, is now an experienced bowler with 25 Tests in which he has bagged 94 wickets. In favourable conditions, he can be quite a handful and this is where the Indian batsmen need to be wary.

He will be partnered by Dane Piedt, the off-spinner - who is a seasoned campaigner. He has 398 wickets in 110 matches and was part of the touring side back in 2015 as well. If the conditions are indeed spin-friendly, he will find himself in the playing XI and well, Indians have stumbled against off-spin in the recent series, so this is another challenge to be wary of.

“It’s a tough start…playing India in India but I don’t think the South Africans would have wanted it any other way… take the big dogs in their home ground. All of us are looking forward to this challenge and there are a lot of player-to-player challenges as well. Can’t wait to get going,” Vernon Philander spoke about the upcoming series and the Indian side, which is the number 1 ranked team in the world, should be on their toes at all times.

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