- India won the T20I series against South Africa by 2-1
- The second ODI will be held in Ranchi on October 9
- Delhi will play host to the last match on October 11
India will lock horns with South Africa on Thursday in the first match of the three-match ODI series. While India will want to clinch another series after winning the recently concluded T20I series against the Proteas 2-1, the Temba Bavuma-led team will eye to settle scores with India and start on a high note.
A new-look Indian team, led by Shikhar Dhawan, will aim to make a statement in the absence of players like Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Mohammed Shami, and Ravichandran Ashwin, who are off to Australia for the T20 World Cup.
The Indian selectors have announced a fresh squad that includes Mukesh Kumar and Rajat Patidar, who earned their maiden call-ups.
The squad also features middle-order batter Shreyas Iyer, who is part of the reserves for the T20 World Cup, and will serve as the vice-captain.
Right-arm pacer Deepak Chahar and leg-spinner Ravi Bishnoi, the other players from the standby list, have also been included in the ODI team for the matches against South Africa.
Shubman Gill, who has impressed in limited opportunities in ODIs, is likely to resume his partnership with Dhawan at the top.
Among other batters, either Rahul Tripathi or Patidar is likely to make an ODI debut on Thursday. Ruturaj Gaikwad, Sanju Samson, and Ishan Kishan are the other batters in the squad who will form the fulcrum of India’s middle order.
Left-arm spinner Shahbaz Ahmed, who was recently called up to the T20I squad for the South Africa series, Bishnoi and Kuldeep Yadav form India’s spin attack.
The pace department will be spearheaded by Shardul Thakur, Chahar, Avesh Khan, and Mohammed Siraj and will also have new face Mukesh, who emerged as the top wicket-taker in the first class games against New Zealand ‘A’ and produced a stellar show in the Irani Cup match.
The squad features as many as six players who could potentially make an ODI debut.
But it will be a tough test for India as the South Africans will be playing for points that they need to qualify for the 50-over World Cup next year.
Weather is going to play a crucial role in the match as it has been raining incessantly here and there is also a prediction of heavy showers on Thursday.
India: Shikhar Dhawan (C), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shubhman Gill, Shreyas Iyer, Rajat Patidar, Rahul Tripathi, Ishan Kishan (WK), Sanju Samson (WK), Shahbaz Ahmed, Shardul Thakur, Kuldeep Yadav, Ravi Bishnoi, Mukesh Kumar, Avesh Khan, Mohd. Siraj, Deepak Chahar.
South Africa: Temba Bavuma (C), Quinton de Kock (WK), Reeza Hendricks Heinrich Klaasen, Keshav Maharaj Janneman Malan, Aiden Markram, David Miller, Lungi Ngidi, Anrich Nortje, Wayne Parnell, A ndile Phehlukwayo, Dwaine Pretorius, Kagiso Rabada, Tabraiz Shamsi.
(Inputs from PTI)