India v South Africa 1st T20 Tips, Predictions and Preview - focus on the number of sixes hit

Virat Kohli (PA Images)

A chance to hit the reboot button after a disappointing World Cup puts the focus on South Africa’s tour to India. 

The three T20Is kick-start the tour, as India and South Africa start their battle. The underlying theme remains finding out a settled squad for the next T20 World Cup, but starting with a win is equally paramount. The first match will be played at the picturesque Dharamsala on Sunday.


India went in with a strong squad, mixing their squad of proven performers with some exciting young talent from IPL talent pool. The likes of Washington Sundar, Rahul Chahar, and Shreyas Iyer will be looking to make their chances count.

However, all eyes will be on KL Rahul, who got a boot from the Test squad. Will he get a chance to show his worth for the T20s? The Pandya brothers give good options to the captain with both bat and ball, while Jasprit Bumrah’s absence opens the door for Khaleel Ahmed and Navdeep Saini to showcase their potential.

South Africa

Only Quinton de Kock, David Miller and Kagiso Rabada survive from South Africa’s last trip to India. With a lot of new names thrown around and weight given to de Kock as the captain, the Proteas are sure at the crossroads. However, the likes of Rassie van der Dussen, Reeza Hendricks, Miller and de Kock himself bring a lot of T20 experience.

Then there is the presence of Kagiso Rabada, who brings a lot of IPL experience. With the team looking to build around him, the likes of Junior Dala, Anrich Nortje, Andile Phehlukwayo and Dwaine Pretrius could look to rally behind and make it a winning start to the series.

Match Up

On paper and experience, it is India that is hands down ahead of South Africa. The Proteas have come with an experimental squad – at best – and will look to surprise the hosts. Interestingly, there is enough IPL talent around in both the squads to make this look like a close fight. India do start as favourites, but South Africa have all the ability so spring a surprise. At least on the big hits front, the Proteas should hold the aces.

History & Statistics

  • India have won their last three T20Is.
  • India have lost four of their last six bilateral T20Is against South Africa.
  • Eight of the last 12 T20I results between these teams favoured the team batting first.
  • South Africa have won five of their last seven T20Is losing just once (W5, T1, L1).
  • South Africa have won the last T20I series in India 2-0.

Key Players

Rohit Sharma has been the centre of all discussion around Indian cricket in the past few weeks, although he hasn’t played much cricket. It is time to let the bat talk, as he looks to add to his 341 runs against South Africa.

Rabada is the leader of the pack for South Africa, now that Dale Steyn is out of the action. With his IPL experience, the speedster could trouble the Indians and be among the wickets.


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India v South Africa 1st T20 Tips, Predictions and Preview - focus on the number of sixes hit

India host South Africa with the first of three T20Is taking place.

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