IND vs SA 2022: 3 players who could pick up the most wickets in 1st ODI

(L-R): Kuldeep Yadav, Shardul Thakur and Keshav Maharaj. (P.C.:Twitter)
(L-R): Kuldeep Yadav, Shardul Thakur and Keshav Maharaj. (P.C.:Twitter)

After a hard-fought T20I series between India and South Africa, the focus now shifts to ODIs, starting with the first game at the Ekana Stadium in Lucknow on Thursday, October 6.

South Africa have named a full-strength side, while the hosts have stuck to their ploy of using backup players and ODI specialists for this format as the main team has left for Australia for T20 World Cup preparations.

Slower bowlers and pacers with variations have traditionally been successful in the ODIs played on this ground. On that note, let's take a look at three players who can have a great day with the ball:

#3 Keshav Maharaj

Keshav Maharaj Appreciation Post1st T20I: SA were 9/5 & 42/6, in danger of being bowled under 100. Keshav batted like a Maharaja in 41 (35) to ensure SA batted out the 202nd T20I: IND posted 237 & other SA bowlers went at 12.25+ ER. Maharaj went under 6 ER & got 2 wickets 👏

Keshav Maharaj was arguably one of the best bowlers for South Africa in the T20I series as he seldom allowed the batters to attack him by mixing his line and length. The left-arm spinner is a clever bowler and has an economy rate of just 4.9 in ODIs this year, with eight wickets from as many games.

The Indian middle-order does have players like Sanju Samson and Shreyas Iyer who like to attack spin. Even someone like Shikhar Dhawan, once set, would be keen to take on the spinners in the middle overs to up the ante.

This could prove to be a great opportunity for Maharaj to pick up crucial wickets and put the hosts on the back foot.

#2 Kuldeep Yadav

Kuldeep Yadav is coming back with a bang ✨ taking 4 wickets against South Africa tomorrow 👍

Once written off from India's white-ball plans, Kuldeep Yadav is slowly but surely coming back into the scheme of things under the new team management.

He has been quite vocal about how coach Rahul Dravid and captain Rohit Sharma have given him confidence and that has been seen in his performances of late.

Kuldeep has played just four ODIs this year, but has five wickets at an impressive economy rate of 4.83. He also has match-ups in his favor against the likes of David Miller and India will hope that he strikes in the middle overs.

#1 Shardul Thakur

Bring back Lord Shardul Thakur.

One of the names missing in India's scheme of things for the T20 World Cup was Shardul Thakur and quite a few eyebrows were raised when he wasn't even named in the reserves.

He can be a bit expensive at times, but there is no doubt that Thakur has been a genuine wicket-taker.

The all-rounder has that uncanny ability to take wickets whenever the team needs and will be even more hungry to prove his mettle after the T20 World Cup snub. With 14 wickets in nine ODIs this year, Thakur is likely to be the hosts' go-to man in Lucknow.

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Edited by Sankalp Srivastava
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