India vs South Africa, 1st Test: List of Key battlesLast updated on Sep 29, 2019, 06:31 pm
India and South Africa gear up for the first Test match to be held in Vizag from October 2 onwards.
India enter as outright favorites and they will want to get off to a strong start and gain control.
However, South Africa are a strong side under Faf du Plessis.
Ahead of the first Test, we look at the key battles.
Philander vs Rohit
Philander will want to make things difficult for Rohit
After having got Rohit Sharma out in the warm-up match, South Africa's senior pacer Vernon Philander will be aiming to make things difficult for the Indian opener.
Rohit is set to play his first Test series as an opener and there are challenges awaiting him.
Philander, who can make the ball work in good zones, can target Rohit's vulnerabilities upfront.
Rabada vs Pujara
Rabada can target Pujara around the off stump
Cheteshwar Pujara will find it difficult against Kagiso Rabada especially facing the new ball.
The top order batsman has the tendency to poke at deliveries outside the off stump early on and Rabada will target the same.
Against Windies, Pujara was foxed by Kemar Roach and the idea will be to move the ball away by pitching it in and around the off stump.
Faf vs Ashwin
Faf vs Ashwin promises to be a delightful affair
Faf is a good player of spin and a lot will depend on how he handles the fort in the middle order.
The senior cricketer will need to play smart cricket and his application against India's premier spinner R Ashwin promises to be a delightful affair.
Ashwin has been amongst the wickets in County and his confidence will be high.
Ishant vs Markram
Ishant vs Markram could set things alive
Ishant Sharma will lead the Indian bowling and his nagging length and line will test South African opener Aiden Markram.
The latter scored a century against Board XI and will want to build on that effort.
He has some good shots under his belt and the Indians cannot afford to let him settle down.
Ishant's exploits upfront will be key.