South Africa take on India at the Rose Bowl, Southampton in the ICC Cricket World Cup on Wednesday and whilst this will be India’s first match of the tournament the Proteas are already on the ropes.
India have had to wait until Match 8 to get into the action. They last won the World Cup in 2011, beating fellow co-hosts Sri Lanka in the final in Mumbai. In World Cup 2015 India were foot perfect in the pool stage (not in operation for 2019) with 6 wins from 6 and they went on to reach the semi finals where they lost to Australia. India were runners up to Australia in CWC 2003 hosted by South Africa and their first world title came in England back in 1983.
In the Champions Trophy staged in England and Wales in 2017 India finished as runners up to Pakistan.
As far as recent form is concerned India coughed up a 2-0 lead at home to Australia in March, a series they lost 3-2. They played two warm up matches in May, losing the first to New Zealand at the Oval by 6 wickets before completing a 95 run win over Bangladesh in Cardiff.
India have been trading at 7/2 joint second favourites in the outright betting to win the tournament.
India Squad: Virat Kohli (capt), Jasprit Bumrah, Yuzvendra Chahal, Shikhar Dhawan, MS Dhoni (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Kedar Jadhav, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Hardik Pandya, KL Rahul, Mohammed Shami, Vijay Shankar, Rohit Sharma, Kuldeep Yadav
The Proteas have lost both of their matches so far and whilst a 104 run defeat to host nation England was disappointing enough a 21 run loss to outsiders Bangladesh on Sunday was something of a disaster.
Both those matches were staged at The Oval and on Sunday the Proteas found themselves chasing 331 for victory. At that stage South Africa were still favourites in the “in play” betting markets to get their first win. However, although the top 6 in the batting order all got starts with Faf du Plessis top scoring with 62, Markram and JP Duminy both made 45 and van der Dussen 41, nobody could kick on as Bangladesh kept the lid on the scoring rate. The innings closed on 309/8 and there was bad news on the injury front with Lungi Ngidi pulling a hamstring, bowling just 4 of his overs.
Early reports suggest suggest that Ngidi could be out for up to 10 days and with Dale Steyn having missed the first two matches the team news will be worth monitoring as the Proteas head to Southampton. Hashim Amla sat out the Bangladesh game after being struck on the helmet against England but is expected to be available for selection for this game.
Quinton de Kock and van der Dussen have both scored a total of 91 runs in South Africa’s two matches so far, Faf du Plessis has made 67.
Imran Tahir has taken 4 wickets in the tournament, Andile Phehlukwayo and Lungi Ngidi have 3 and Rabada and Morris have 2.
South Africa are now trading at around 20/1 in the outright betting to win the tournament, twice the price they were a week ago.
This is how the Proteas lined up against Bangladesh on Sunday
Quinton de Kock, Aiden Markram, Faf du Plessis (captain), Rassie van der Dussen, JP Duminy, David Miller, Chris Morris, Andile Phehlukwayo, Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi, Imran Tahir
Head to Head
The teams have met 83 times with 46 wins for South Africa and 34 for India and 3 no results.
The most recent meetings between the sides came in South Africa in February 2018 and India coasted to a 5-1 series win. The teams met at The Oval in the Champions Trophy in 2017 and India came out on top by 8 wickets.
The Betting, Click here for all markets
South Africa 7/4
Note prices quoted are correct at the time of publication but are subject to change.
The Proteas look up against it here and another defeat would leave little margin for error in their remaining matches. Southampton is known as a high scoring ground and hence we look to the batsman to make a 50 market for a betting interest.
Kohli is an obvious choice for India whilst Faf du Plessis has the responsibility of delivering for the Proteas.
We also go with Rabada to be top South African bowler on a deck where his pace may be more of a threat than the spin of Tahir.
Batsman to score a Fifty in the match, Virat Kohli? Yes at 12/10
Batsman to score a Fifty in the match, Faf du Plessis? Yes at 7/4
Top South Africa Bowler, Rabada at 33/10
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