The first T20I between India and South Africa was washed out and there was no play possible. As no play was possible India remains firm favorites for the second match as well. The Indian top-order appears to be better armed than the South African counterpart to handle the opposition bowling. India is playing at home in this series and is more familiar with the pitch conditions. It is a major advantage in all circumstances. South Africa has a fragile batting lineup, especially in the middle order. They are also prone to spin bowling on favorable tracks to spinners. South Africa has limited outings before they can finalize their combination for the T20I world cup next year. This time they have has been cut even shorter due to the rain-affected first encounter. The second match is to be played at Mohali which has conditions which are typical to the subcontinent. The Dharamsala conditions were similar to what the Proteas get in South Africa.
South Africa team preparations
One good thing for South Africa could be that they did not end up on the losing side in the very first match. Another positive for them is that two players in the side have played a lot of T20 cricket at Mohali. They are David Miller and Beuran Hendricks, Miller especially has a tremendous record at the venue. Other key players for the South Africans will be de Kock and Dussen. The team management will be looking to get the team on the move for the world cup. The retirement of Imran Tahir would have pushed back the South African team and this void is to be filled by Tabraiz Shamsi and George Linde. They have a good fast bowling unit though in the form of Junior Dala and Anrich Nortje.
India team preparations
India is likely to field the same side that was scheduled to play at Dharamsala. The powerful top order consisting of Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, and Virat Kohli will be back in action. Shikhar Dhawan was out due to injury on the West Indies tour. Kohli and Sharma were in good knick in the Caribbean. It looks like India is going to drop the conservative approach to T20I and will adopt a more British approach. They have power-hitting middle order in the form of Shreyas Iyyer, Rushabh Pant, Manish Pandey, and Hardik Pandya. This middle order is not very high on the experience but there is plenty of flares there. They are sure to miss the services of M S Dhoni who was their principal on-field strategist and finisher. India looks a bit light on the fast bowling front with Bumrah and Bhuvaneshwar Kumar missing in the bowling attack. Saini and Khaleel Ahmed did well against West Indies but the South African challenge will be a lot harder. The spin bowling attack will be led by Jadeja and Krunal Pandya.
The weather forecast for the Mohali encounter is a lot better with no chances of rain interruptions. This is likely to be a battle between South African bowling and Indian batting and this will decide the outcome of the match. India has a better-balanced side with more experience and they are playing at home. So, India is more likely to come out trumps in the match.
India, South Africa.
The Venue, Match Timing, and TV & Live Streaming
Venue: Punjab Cricket Association IS Bindra Stadium, Mohali.
Timing: Wednesday, September 18, 2019, 7 PM IST, 1.30 PM GMT.
TV: Star Sports.
Live Streaming: Hotstar.