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How India might line up for first T20I

What will the Indian XI look like against the Proteas in the first T20?

SENIOR ANALYST
Top 5 / Top 10 17 Feb 2018, 03:45 IST
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2nd Momentum ODI: South Africa v India
India completely dominated the ODI series against South Africa

After dominating the South Africans in the six-match ODI series, the visitors are all set to take on the hosts in a three-match T20 series. South Africa started the tour strongly by beating India in the test series. The men in blue bounced back with some scintillating performances in the one-day series. India defeated the home side 5-1 in the ODI series.

Virat Kohli and Co. have performed wonderfully on the tour so far. They will look to take their current momentum to the shortest format of the game as well. The Indian team has focused on rewarding players for their domestic performances in the limited overs format. Suresh Raina and Jaydev Unadkat have made a comeback in the side owing to their performances in domestic cricket and IPL respectively.

South Africa will take on India in the three-match series starting from 18 February.

India's announced squad for the series:

Virat Kohli (captain), Rohit Sharma (vice-captain), Shikhar Dhawan, MS Dhoni (wicket-keeper), Dinesh Karthik, Manish Pandey, Shardul Thakur, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Suresh Raina, Hardik Pandya, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Axar Patel, KL Rahul, Jaydev Unadkat.

Let us now have a look at the possible starting XI.


Openers

South Africa v India - 5th Momentum ODI
Rohit Sharma seems to be slowly returning to form

Rohit Sharma

The Indian opener battled with poor form throughout the test series. He carried the form to ODI series too before he finally clicked. After struggling in the first few matches Rohit came back strongly to score a gutsy century in the fifth ODI. Rohit was in Midas touch before the South African tour commenced.

He was coming on the back off some stellar performances against Sri Lanka which included a ton in a T20. The Mumbai lad will be the first choice opener.

Shikhar Dhawan

The flamboyant Indian opener has been in sensational form in this series. Dhawan has made enormous contributions on this tour. He should open the batting alongside Rohit Sharma in the first T20. In the previous series against Sri Lanka, KL Rahul opened the innings in the absence of Dhawan.

Owing to his recent form, the southpaw will be preferred over the other Indian opener. Dhawan will be keen on bettering his record in the shortest version of the game.

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