India bowl and bring Ashwin in; Bumrah out with back pain

Toss India opt to bowl v South Africa

India and South Africa kickstarted their final T20I series before the T20 World Cup with home captain Rohit Sharma opting to bowl on a Thiruvananthapuram surface that looks set for plenty of runs and a fair amount of dew.

India made four changes to their XI from their last outing. Jasprit Bumrah is out with a back pain, with Deepak Chahar replacing him. R Ashwin takes Yuzvendra Chahal’s place. Rishabh Pant and Arshdeep Singh replace the two rested players Hardik Pandya and Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
Tristan Stubbs, the most expensive buy at the SA20 auction, slots in at No. 6 with David Miller ahead of him. Reeza Hendricks makes way for captain Temba Bavuma, who is back in action after a three-month injury layoff.

Both sides are playing only five bowlers, including two spinners. Tabraiz Shamsi and Keshav Maharaj are the left-arm spinners while Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje and Wayne Parnell are the pacers for the visitors. For India, Harshal Patel, Chahar and Arshdeep make up the fast bowling line-up.

“I think it is very critical to keep doing what you’ve been doing, and keep that momentum with you,” Rohit said at the toss. “We’ve been playing some good cricket, and want to continue. When you win games, there’s a lot of healthy atmosphere and we want to maintain it. At the same time, we want to tick all our boxes. This series gives us another perfect opportunity to fine-tune what is required from the team’s perspective.

“The guys always enjoy an India trip, you see the fans, see the full crowd, something you don’t see always,” Bavuma said. “Good for me to be back as well, I’ve been out of action for a while too, it’s nice. The guys always enjoy an India trip, you see the fans, see the full crowd, something you don’t see always. Good for me to be back as well, I’ve been out of action for a while too, it’s nice.”

India XI: 1 Rohit Sharma (capt), 2 KL Rahul, 3 Virat Kohli, 4 Suryakumar Yadav, 5 Rishabh Pant, 6 Dinesh Karthik (wk), 7 Axar Patel, 8 Harshal Patel, 9 R Ashwin 10 Deepak Chahar, 11 Arshdeep Singh.

South Africa XI: 1 Quinton de Kock (wk), 2 Temba Bavuma (capt), 3 Rilee Rossouw, 4 Aiden Markram, 5 Tristan Stubbs, 6 David Miller, 7 Wayne Parnell, 8 Kagiso Rabada, 9 Keshav Maharaj, 10 Anrich Nortje, 11 Tabraiz Shamsi.


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