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SA vs IND 3rd Test, Cape Town: Fantasy Preview, Prediction and MPL Top Picks

Match: South Africa vs India, 3rd Test (SA vs IND 3rd Test)

Date: January 11 – January 15, 2022

Venue: Newlands Cricket Stadium, Cape Town, South Africa

The third and last Test between South Africa and India will begin in Cape Town on January 11. With Dean Elgar-led South Africa winning the second Test in Johannesburg and levelling the series, the concluding Test will decide the winner of the silverware. India captain Virat Kohli, who had missed the second Test due to back spasm will be returning for the third Test. This will be the 31-year-old’s 99th match in the longest format.

Fast bowler Mohammed Siraj picked up a hamstring injury midway into the second Test and there is no update on his availability for the next game. If Siraj is unable to take to the field, one between Umesh Yadav and Ishant Sharma is likely to make the cut.

In the second Test, KL Rahul led the Indian team in Kohli’s absence and chose to bat first after winning the toss. The visitors were bundled out on 202, after which Shardul Thakur picked up seven wickets to help dismiss South Africa for 229 in their first innings. India then scored 266 in their second innings, setting a target of 240 for the hosts. Skipper Elgar remained unbeaten on 96 to help the Proteas win the game by seven wickets and level the series.

Ahead of the third Test, let’s look at the head to head total of both the teams, the weather report, top fantasy picks for your MPL team and more.

Weather update and pitch report for SA vs IND Test

Unlike the pitch in Johannesburg where the quicks bowled most of the overs, the surface at Newlands will have something for the spinners too. The venue is also known for producing matches with results. Only a few games here have ended in a draw. The highest Test total here is 651, which came against Australia in 2009. The lowest team total is 35 all out against England in 1899.

As for the weather in Cape Town tomorrow, it is going to be cloudy all through the day and the game could be interrupted by rain.

South Africa team news and predicted XI

Team news: South Africa are unlikely to tinker with their playing combination for the final Test. They put up a combined team effort in Johannesburg, with their pacers being terrific in particular. The Indian batters will have to be on their toes to get past the South African speedsters.

Predicted XI: Dean Elgar (c), Aiden Markram, Keegan Petersen, Rassie van der Dussen, Temba Bavuma, Kyle Verreynne (wk), Marco Jansen, Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi, Duanne Olivier and Keshav Maharaj.

India team news and predicted XI

Team news: As aforementioned, Kohli will be returning for the Cape Town Test after warming the bench in Johannesburg due to an injury. This will be the skipper’s 99th Test match and he will be looking to make it memorable by ending the two-year century drought.

Predicted XI: Mayank Agarwal, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (c), Ajinkya Rahane, Rishabh Pant (wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Mohammad Shami, Shardul Thakur, Mohammed Siraj/ Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah.

Head to head total

India and South Africa have played 41 Test matches between them, of which India have won 15 and South Africa 16. 10 games ended in a draw.  Talking about the stats at the Newlands ground, South Africa have won 26 and lost 21 of the 58 Tests they have played at the venue. They were also involved in 11 draws. India have played five Test matches here, and they have lost three of them while drawing two.

SA vs IND 3rd Test: Five players to watch out for

Here we list five players you must pick in your MPL fantasy XI for SA vs IND 3rd Test.

Rishabh Pant – Wicketkeeper batter, India

Rishabh Pant is the best bet from MPL’s wicketkeeper’s category for this game. Pant received a lot of flak for his rash shot in the second innings of the second Test, which had him out for a duck, and will be hoping to make amends for it in the all-important series decider. The batter has just one half-century in his last 13 Test outings, and will be looking to draw some inspiration from his impressive performances in Australia last year.

Dean Elgar – Batter, South Africa

The Proteas skipper will be looking to continue with his fine form and help his side clinch the trophy in Cape Town. Elgar scored 77 in the first Test and an unbeaten 96 in the second Test. In all, the opening batter has a healthy average of 40.25 in 71 Test innings.

Marco Jansen – All-rounder, South Africa

Jansen made his Test debut in the ongoing series and grabbed the opportunity with both hands by picking up 12 wickets in the first two Tests. The left-arm pacer dismissed KL Rahul in both the innings of the second Test and will be looking to do it again in the concluding Test. Jansen was among the net bowlers who bowled to the Indian batters in the nets during the 2018 tour. He was rewarded for his consistent performances in domestic cricket with a Test cap for the on-going series. The 21-year-old bowling all-rounder generates good pace and has an effective short ball.

KL Rahul – Batter, India

KL Rahul was in sensational form across formats in 2021 and will be looking to replicate the same in 2022. The opener scored a fine century in the first Test in Centurion, and followed that with a half-century in the second Test in Johannesburg. His opening partner Mayank Agarwal has got starts, but has not been able to convert them into a long innings. For India to stand a chance in the series decider, a big opening partnership between KL and Mayank will be of much importance.

Kagiso Rabada – Bowler, South Africa

South Africa’s fast bowling has been the team’s greatest weapon in the on-going series. Kagiso Rabada picked up six wickets in the second Test and will be looking to grab a few more in Cape Town. Rabada has been well assisted by the likes of Lungi Ngidi and Jansen.

SA vs IND 3rd Test: MPL Fantasy XI

SA vs Ind 3rd Test: where and what time to watch the match live in India 

The South Africa vs India Test series will be streamed on the Star Sports Network in India. You can watch it on all Star Sports channels – Star Sports 1, Star Sports 1 HD, Star Sports 1 Hindi, Star Sports 1 Hindi HD, Star Sports 1 Tamil, Star Sports 1 Telugu, and Star Sports 1 Kannada. The live streaming of the game will be available on Hotstar for users with a subscription. The game will begin at 02:00 PM IST on January 11. 

Also read: Top 10 Fastest Bowlers in Cricket History

Umaima Saeed
A writer who primarily writes on cricket. As of 2021, she has covered cricket for more than a dozen publications.

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