South Africa vs India 2nd ODI: Preview and Prediction
After seizing an early lead in the three-match ODI series against hosts South Africa, India is gearing up for the second clash in Gqeberha on Tuesday. KL Rahul, leading the side, orchestrated a resounding victory in the series opener at Johannesburg, trouncing the Proteas by 8 wickets with a staggering 200 balls to spare.
Rahul’s redemption as captain has been palpable, especially after the prior ODI series in South Africa where India faced a whitewash at the hands of the hosts. This time, Rahul and co. initiated the campaign on a positive note, showcasing resilience even without senior players. The resounding triumph in the Pink ODI fortified Rahul’s leadership record, remaining unbeaten in the last ten matches while steering the Indian team.
Aiden Markram, leading South Africa, faced a setback in the series opener as his team succumbed to the dominant Indian side. Despite this, South Africa boasts a formidable squad, posing a credible threat to the rejuvenated Indian team in the second encounter.
In terms of team news, it is likely that the Proteas will maintain an unchanged lineup for the upcoming match. However, India faces a forced change in their playing XI, with Shreyas Iyer, who contributed 52 runs in the first ODI, unavailable for the remaining two matches as he joins India’s test squad for preparations.
What have they done so far?
Before the ICC ODI World Cup 2023, the Proteas engaged in a 5-match home ODI series against Australia. Despite Australia’s strong start, the home team staged an incredible comeback, overturning a 0-2 deficit to clinch the series 3-2.
Entering the World Cup with high spirits, the Proteas secured seven victories out of nine games. The only losses came against table-toppers India and the Netherlands, who finished last in the tournament. Despite finishing second in the points table, Proteas’ strong form didn’t carry through to the Semis, where they suffered a 3-wicket defeat to Australia, extending their wait for the elusive World Cup trophy.
On the Indian front, India won a 3-match home ODI series against Australia, triumphing 2-1 just before the start of the ODI WC 2023. India’s journey in the 2023 ICC Cricket World Cup was nothing short of spectacular, remaining undefeated in all 10 league matches. Despite their stellar run, the hearts of billions were shattered in the finale as Australia secured a 6-wicket victory, denying India the coveted WC title.
In the ongoing series’ First ODI, Indian pacer Arshdeep Singh’s five-wicket haul played a pivotal role in restricting the hosts to a mere 116. The run chase was anchored by fifties from Iyer and debutant Sai Sudharsan, leading the visitors to a comfortable victory.
Head to Head Record
In the history of their ODI encounters, South Africa and India have faced off 92 times in ODIs, with South Africa holding the upper hand, securing 50 victories compared to India’s 39, while 3 matches ended without a result.
In the most recent series in October 2022, India demonstrated their prowess by winning the home ODI series 2-1 against South Africa. Should India triumph in the upcoming match, it would mark only the second ODI series win for the visitors in South Africa.
The Men in Blue secured their previous and sole series win on South African soil under the leadership of Virat Kohli back in February 2018.
Aiden Markram (South Africa): Aiden Markram, the Proteas skipper, faced an early dismissal at just 12 runs in the first match against Avesh Khan, but his potential for a remarkable comeback is undeniable.
Renowned as a key player for South Africa, Markram has showcased his class throughout the ongoing year, amassing an impressive 995 runs in 22 ODIs with an impressive average of 52.37 and a strike rate of 114.50, including 5 fifties and 3 centuries.
Sai Sudharsan (India): Sai Sudharsan, the 22-year-old opening batter for the Indian Team, made a memorable international debut by playing an unbeaten innings of 55 runs off 43 balls. Notably, he joined the ranks of only four Indian openers and became the 17th Indian batter overall to achieve a 50+ score on their ODI debut.
Despite being relatively new to the international scene, Sudharsan’s composure during the series opener, especially while chasing a low total, was nothing short of mesmerizing. His stellar performance in domestic cricket has rightfully earned him recognition, and there’s anticipation for another impressive innings at Gqeberha.
Predicted Playing XIs
South Africa: Reeza Hendricks, Tony de Zorzi, Rassie van der Dussen, Aiden Markram ©, Heinrich Klaasen (wk), David Miller, Wiaan Mulder, Andile Phehlukwayo, Keshav Maharaj, Nandre Burger, Tabraiz Shamsi
India: Ruturaj Gaikwad, Sai Sudharsan, Tilak Varma, Sanju Samson, KL Rahul © (wk), Rinku Singh, Axar Patel, Arshdeep Singh, Avesh Khan, Kuldeep Yadav, Mukesh Kumar
Despite India’s recent loss in the T20I match in Gqeberha against the same opponent, the venue is expected to have minimal impact on the upcoming ODI, considering the Men in Blue’s formidable ability to triumph over any opposition, particularly in this format.
While India’s historical track record at this venue hasn’t been favorable losing four out of five matches in the past, their prowess and recent achievements in ODI cricket make them strong contenders. India remains the favorites to clinch the upcoming match and seal the series, building on their commendable track record in ODIs.