Full-house crowds, ringing cash registers, flowing beer and sunny days – this is but a minimal expectation for the next three months.
Rahane’s form has been wretched since the start of the home series against England in late 2016.
Clearly, they are pining for tougher challenges.
The master blaster Sachin Tendulkar believes the current Indian team travelling South Africa is the most balanced Test team ever on paper.
Virat Kohli’s side have won nine successive series to climb to the top of the International Cricket Council’s rankings but most of the success has come on batting friendly wickets. Meanwhile South Africa would be keen on regaining the number one spot from India. They won the last series played here in 2015-16 by a 2-1 margin.
What’s more, Kohli’s horoscope is far superior to that of his Proteas counterpart Faf du Plessis’. “If it’s a bowling-friendly track then obviously we might go with four bowlers and if the conditions are perceived to be batting-friendly, we might opt for five bowlers. We have quality spinners in our ranks and they can put up a good show”, he revealed.
Speaking to CricketNext, a CSA official said that the idea was to create a wicket that has sideways movement rather than just a fast deck, as it is one of the areas where the Indian team has failed to adapt to on overseas tours.
India will bank on their premier batsmen – Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli – who ended 2017 as the second and fourth-highest runs-scorers in the longset format respectively in the calendar year to help their side maintain its top Test status. With the kind of pace he has been displaying, he can be a great asset for the team on South African wickets which usually have bounce and carry. Normally, we play in Cape Town at the end of the season and by that time we are beaten mentally. South Africa find themselves in trouble early, reeling at 12/3. “We’re going to have to wait and see once they pass the first Test match”, said Philander at the media interaction here on Wednesday.
It just isn’t about India though. Tendulkar has mentioned the importance of playing the new ball properly and also pointed out that even though there were pitches that favoured fast bowlers in India, conditions in South Africa will always be pretty different towards the initial few overs and middle overs.