While the senior Indian team is putting up a dominant show in the Caribbean land the junior side is on a roll against the visiting South African A team. Till now both the games of the 5-match series have produced good contests. The Proteas have been professional in their part but the home team has outclassed them with their ability to close off games. Now it is time for the 3rd unofficial ODI and again it will be hosted by Greenfield International stadium at Thiruvananthapuram.
For the India A side, a victory will ensure another series win. They have continued their hot run of form and above all, it can be termed as a complete team effort. Whether it is bowling or batting the Blue team has got all the answers to the opposition’s questionnaire. Still, the remaining games will be important for the players who are eyeing a spot in the T20I squad for the next’s year championship.
On the other hand, the visitors have failed to cope up with the intensity of their opponents. They have lacked proper planning which has brought them to a do or die situation. What’s more disturbing is that none of the players have taken responsibility of guiding the team in troubled waters. All in all, it has been a groggy act from the African side but things can quickly turnaround if they play to their potential.
The young guns Ruturaj Gaikwad and Shubman Gill will be trying to provide a good start. Anmolpreet Singh needs to make use of his opportunities as there are others who are waiting for their chances. Manish Pandey will be leading the side and his experience will be crucial in the middle-order. After his Man of the Match performance in the last game, Ishan Kishan will be keen to continue his good form.
Krunal Pandya will be accompanying Axar Patel in the all-rounder’s section. Yuzvendra Chahal will be the premier spinner and he will be on a mission to regain his place in the senior team after being ignored for the upcoming T20 series against Proteas. The trio of Deepak Chahar, Shardul Thakur, and Khaleel Ahmed will make up the pace attack. Shivam Dube might get a look in if one of the pacers is rested.
Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shubman Gill, Anmolpreet Singh/Nitish Rana, Manish Pandey (C), Ishan Kishan (WK), Krunal Pandya, Axar Patel, Deepak Chahar, Khaleel Ahmed, Shardul Thakur/Shivam Dube.
Jaaneman Malan and Reeza Hendricks will be facing the new-ball and the latter needs some support at top of the order. Skipper, Temba Bavuma is likely to retain his No.3 position and he should lead the side from the front. Heinrich Klaasen and Khaya Zondo will be sharing the middle-order duties and the former will also be keeping the wickets. Klaasen’s hitting prowess makes him the X-factor of the side.
George Linde has shown a lot of promise with his quickfire half-century in the second tie. Marco Jansen is probably going to get another opportunity to prove his mettle. Junior Dala and Anrich Nortje will be the frontline pacers. Due to his poor returns, Beuran Hendricks might be replaced with Lutho Sipamla. Bjorn Fortuin will be the lead spinner as he has bowled economical spells in the previous games.
Jaaneman Malan, Reeza Hendricks, Temba Bavuma (C), Khaya Zondo, Heinrich Klaasen (WK), George Linde, Marco Jensen, Junior Dala, Anrich Nortje, Bueran Hendricks/Lutho Sipamla, Bjorn Fortuin.
The focus will be on
Manish Pandey (India)
When on song the Karnataka batsman is a treat to watch. A month ago a sparkling century against the Windies A got him the ticket for the Caribbean limited-overs sojourn but was unable to replicate his domestic form. Luckily he has been retained for the home series against Proteas. Now it is time that he gains some confidence before the 3-match series which is going to start in two weeks’ time.
Anrich Nortje (South Africa)
The Rainbow nation is full of quality fast-bowling exponents and Anrich Nortje is one of them His height and pace makes him a lethal customer. He was even selected for the 2019 World Cup but was unable to participate because of an ill-timed shoulder injury. The speedster will be eyeing a return to the national fold so he will be eager to trouble the opposition with his skillset.
Head to Head
Matches played – 18 | India A won – 14 | South Africa A won – 3 | No result – 1
76 – Batting average recorded by Ruturaj Gaikwad in 11 List A games in 2019
31 – Number of runs required by George Linde to complete 1000 List-A runs
TV – Star Sports 1, Star Sports 1 HD
Live Streaming – Hotstar
Match Timings – 9:00 IST and 3:30 GMT
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