Battle Begins: South Africa vs India, ICC World Test Championship 2023-2025, 1st Test Match Preview

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The final frontier for India as they face South Africa in a two-match Test series. The closest India has come to winning a series in South Africa was in the 2010-11 season when the series ended 1-1. The upcoming series will be a great opportunity for India to create history. India will have to contend with South Africa’s motivated team, led by Temba Bavuma, who will be seeking to preserve their unbeaten home record against India and give a fitting farewell to their former captain, Dean Elgar.

South Africa will need to quickly get into Test mode as they haven’t played a Test match since March and they need to gear up for their first assignment in the current World Test Championship cycle. Rain is a threat on the first two days of the Test in Centurion.

Aiden Markram and KL Rahul will be players to watch in the series as they undergo transformations in their performances. Markram is seeking to establish himself as a premier batter, while Rahul is transitioning to a middle-order role and will also take on the responsibility of wicketkeeping.

Team news for the series includes the recovery of Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi from their injuries. South Africa’s probable playing XI features Dean Elgar, Aiden Markram, Tony de Zorzi, Temba Bavuma, David Bedingham/Keegan Petersen, Kyle Verreynne, Marco Jansen, Keshav Maharaj, Gerald Coetzee, Kagiso Rabada, and Lungi Ngidi. Meanwhile, India’s probable playing XI includes Rohit Sharma, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, KL Rahul, Shreyas Iyer, Ravindra Jadeja, Shardul Thakur/R Ashwin, Jasprit Bumrah, Prasidh Krishna, and Mohammed Siraj.

The pitch at SuperSport Park is expected to be fast, and with rain and overcast conditions, it could prove challenging for the players. Virat Kohli’s impressive Test batting average in South Africa and Aiden Markram’s redemption will be areas of focus in the series. Quotes from Temba Bavuma highlight the challenges India will pose for South Africa in the upcoming series.

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