SA vs India, 2nd Test: Match preview, stats, and more
South Africa and India will square off in the second Test at The Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg, starting January 3. India lead the three-match series 1-0 after winning the series opener at the SuperSport Park, Centurion. It was their fourth-ever win in South Africa. Now, India can claim their first Test series victory in the Rainbow Nation. Here is the match preview.
Why does it matter?
- India won their fourth-ever Test in South Africa by beating them in Centurion.
- The Virat Kohli-led side now have a terrific opportunity to script history in Johannesburg.
- Kohli can become the first Indian skipper to win a Test series in South Africa.
- As of now, Sri Lanka are the only Asian side to have won a Test series in the nation (2-0).
Pitch report, weather, and TV listing
The Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg will host the second Test. It will begin at 1:30 PM IST. The surface here assists fast bowlers with plenty of pace and bounce. As per reports, the weather can be cloudy on all five days. One can watch the match live on the Star Sports Network and stream the same on the Hotstar app (paid subscription).
Will India play an extra batter?
India had a balanced XI in the Centurion Test. However, middle-order is the only grey area. It remains to be seen if skipper Kohli includes an extra batter in place of one of the pacers. Probable XI: KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Virat Kohli (captain), Rishabh Pant (wicket-keeper), Ravichandran Ashwin, Shardul Thakur, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj.
Ryan Rickelton likely to replace Quinton de Kock
Entering the Test series, South Africa already looked depleted with the absence of marquee players. The sudden retirement of star wicket-keeper Quinton de Kock from Tests further dented their plight. Uncapped Ryan Rickelton is expected to replace him. Probable XI: Dean Elgar (captain), Aiden Markram, Keegan Petersen, Rassie van der Dussen, Temba Bavuma, Rickelton, Duanne Olivier, Marco Jansen, Keshav Maharaj, Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi.
Captain Kohli set to enter record books
Kohli could become the first Indian captain to win a Test series in South Africa. Before him, Rahul Dravid and MS Dhoni won a Test each in the nation. Kohli could also emulate the legendary Steve Waugh in terms of Test wins (41). A century will be icing on the cake. The Indian captain hasn't scored an international ton in over two years.