Vernon Philander says South Africa are eager to take on India’s “big dogs on their own ground” when they face off in the first Test.
The Proteas, who spectacularly lost at home 2-0 to Sri Lanka in their last Test series, face trial by spin when getting their World Test Championship campaign under way in a three-match series gets under way at Visakhapatnam on Wednesday.
Philander said: “It’s a tough start… playing India in India but I don’t think the South Africans would have wanted it any other way … take the big dogs in their home ground.
“All of us are looking forward to this challenge and there are a lot of player-to-player challenges as well. Can’t wait to get going.”
South Africa will include three uncapped players – paceman Anrich Nortje, wicketkeeper Rudi Second and all-rounder Senuran Muthusamy – in their squad as they begin life without retired veterans Dale Steyn and Hashim Amla, while India have handed recalls to keeper Wriddhiman Saha and spinner Ravi Ashwin.
Faf du Plessis captains the South Afric side and interim team director Enoch Nkwe has taken charge after the decision not to renew the contract of West Indian coach Ottis Gibson following a disappointing World Cup campaign for the limited-overs side.
Mayank Agarwal scored his second double century as India dominated the second day of their Test against Bangladesh in Indore.
Stokes, Buttler and Archer will be captained by Steve Smith for Rajasthan.
Ben Stokes has no desire to be England captain, saying: “It’s just not one of those things I’m desperate to do.”
An England cricket fan talking about the Nineties, won’t be talking about a decade, but a phenomenon.
What were you doing when you were sixteen? You weren’t making your Test debut at the Gabba.
New Zealand bowler Lockie Ferguson is confident he can cause “a little bit of anxiety” in England’s batsman.
Joe Root is realistic about his World T20 chances…
England captain Joe Root has preached the virtue of patience in a new approach under Silverwood.
Good for the series, bad for England…
England’s bowlers were given a stiff workout on another flat pitch in Whangarei…