South Africa vs India 2023: India’s strongest predicted playing XI against South Africa

Dec 11, 2023

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Indian-Team. (Photo by Pankaj Nangia/Getty Images)

Team India’s South Africa tour is set to kick off officially with the second T20I, on Tuesday, December 12, at St. George’s Park, in Gqeberha, following a rain-marred first T20I at Kingsmead in Durban. Suryakumar Yadav, fresh from leading India to a commanding 4-1 victory against Australia, will spearhead the team. This marks Yadav’s inaugural overseas leadership challenge, facing off against a strong South African squad. 

Riding on their recent triumphs, India will aim to maintain their winning streak and set the stage for the upcoming ODI and Test series in this month-long tour. Anticipation will loom over India’s probable playing XI for the second T20I, as they brace for a competitive showdown against a formidable opposition. As the tour unfolds, all eyes will be on Yadav’s strategic prowess and the team’s performance in this crucial series abroad.

Here’s India’s predicted XI against South Africa:

Openers: Yashasvi Jaiswal, Ruturaj Gaikwad

In the absence of key players like Shubman Gill and Rohit Sharma, Yashasvi Jaiswal has emerged as a standout opener for India, delivering strong starts crucial for the team. His left-handed style adds a dynamic edge to India’s batting line-up. With consistent stellar performances, Jaiswal heads into the South African tour brimming with confidence, aiming to maintain his impressive form and make an impact.

India have found another promising opener in Ruturaj Gaikwad, earning praise for his stellar performances. His impressive century against Australia in the T20I series highlighted his consistency in scoring runs. Gaikwad’s prowess isn’t limited to batting; he’s also seen as a potential future leader. His selection across all formats for the South Africa tour underscored the team’s confidence in his abilities.

Middle Order: Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav (C), Rinku Singh, Jitesh Sharma (WK)

Shreyas Iyer, poised as a senior figure in the squad, will bring a mix of experience and style to the team. Known for his stabilizing role, he balances the innings with solid batting and powerful shots. His versatility is reflected by his inclusion across all formats, emphasizing his importance and the team’s confidence in his multifaceted abilities.

Suryakumar Yadav, entrusted with captaincy, enters the role backed by recent triumphs and recognition as the top T20I batter. With extensive experience in this format, Yadav is primed to lead the team’s charge. Renowned for his flashy strokeplay and bolstering the batting lineup, his impact stretches beyond leadership, making him a pivotal asset in India’s quest for success in the series.

Rinku Singh is the new emerging face for Team India in the finishing role, has seamlessly embraced this awaited position for India. His standout displays during the Australia series showcased his remarkable ability to provide late-innings firepower, a crucial aspect for the team. Singh’s precision and power in executing the finisher’s role perfectly complement India’s batting lineup. His adeptness at handling pressure and swiftly adding runs during the death overs will add a dynamic dimension to the team’s batting.

Jitesh Sharma is set to take charge behind the stumps, proving himself not just as a dependable wicket-keeper but also a skilled batter. His impressive performances in the Australia series, marked by notable innings and sharp wicket-keeping, have earned the team’s trust. India’s confidence in Sharma as their designated keeper remains steadfast for the upcoming South Africa series.

All-rounder: Ravindra Jadeja

Ravindra Jadeja is set to make a comeback into the XI following a break since the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023. His inclusion enriches the squad with a dynamic edge. Recognized for his all-round expertise, Jadeja brings a valuable mix of batting and bowling prowess. His exceptional fielding further amplifies his importance, thereby elevating the team’s performance on the field. 

Bowlers: Ravi Bishnoi, Arshdeep Singh, Mohammed Siraj, Mukesh Kumar

Ravi Bishnoi’s preference over seasoned campaigners like Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal proved to be a calculated move that reaped rich rewards during the Australia series. The young leg-spinner displayed his skill by securing an impressive tally of nine wickets, rightfully earning the man of the series accolade. Bishnoi’s exceptional performance not only showcased his knack for taking wickets but also his calmness in high-pressure situations.

Arshdeep Singh, a left-arm seamer, has emerged as a crucial bowling asset for India, adept at handling both new and old balls. His impressive displays, characterized by skilled seam bowling, have garnered attention. Arshdeep’s ability to consistently deliver precise yorkers adds a formidable dimension to India’s bowling arsenal.

Pacer Mohammed Siraj, who is returning after the ODI World Cup 2023, steps in as the senior bowler, enriching the bowling lineup with experience and depth. Renowned for his adaptability, Siraj’s role extends across tests, ODIs, and T20s. His effectiveness in both powerplay and death overs presents a tactical advantage, offering flexibility to the team’s captain. Having proven himself across formats, Siraj will aim to reaffirm his expertise in the field. 

Amidst high-scoring games between Australia and India in the recently concluded series, five out of ten innings saw totals surpassing 200, with two matches witnessing both teams breaching this mark. Mukesh Kumar, bowling 96 deliveries, maintained an average of 36.50 and an economy of 9.12. While wickets have been a challenge in his T20I journey, his performance solidifies his contention for a spot in India’s squad headed to the Rainbow Nation.

India’s predicted XI against South Africa:

Yashasvi Jaiswal, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav (C), Rinku Singh, Jitesh Sharma (Wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Ravi Bishnoi, Arshdeep Singh, Mohammed Siraj, Mukesh Kumar

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