Pitch Report: Kingsmead, Durban
Ends: Umgeni End, Old Fort End
Home Team: Dolphins
Test History: 40 Tests; 14 home wins; 13 away wins; 13 draws
Last 10 Tests: 5 home wins; 4 away wins; 1 draw
Last 10 Tosses: 6 batted first (3 wins, 3 defeats); 4 bowled first (3 wins, 1 draw)
Little more than a stone's throw from the ocean, in the heart of the city, Kingsmead is located in humid Durban, home to sandy beaches and surfing.
The ground has played host to Tests since January 1923 when England and South Africa played to out a draw. In 1939 England and South Africa played a timeless Test, which also ended in a draw when England had to catch the boat home.
Arguably the most famous match at the ground is when South Africa beat Australia by an innings and 129-runs in a Test match in 1970, with Barry Richards and Graeme Pollock causing havoc for the hosts.
The venue was also the scene for the last Test of South Africa's greatest ever Test cricketer thus far, Jacques Kallis, in 2013.
Kingsmead's easterly location means it is prone to bad light and the humid climate can result in powerful thunderstorms.
Last Time Out
The Proteas beat India by 10 wickets in 2013 in the second and final Test to wrap up a one-nil series victory over the Asian team.
India won the toss and decided to bat first, putting up a total of 334 all out, with opener Murali Vijay scoring 97 while Proteas paceman Dale Steyn finished with figures of six for 100.
The home team responded with a massive 500 all out with Kallis, in his final Test, hitting a majestic 115 while there were three other fifties in the innings.
The visitors could only muster 223 in their second stint at the crease, leaving the Proteas with a small target of 59, which they chased down without losing a wicket.
Happy Hunting Ground
Kallis has the most runs at Kingsmead with 1266 in 16 Tests. That tally includes five centuries and five fifties, however, Gary Kirsten holds the record for the highest individual Test score at the ground with 275 against England.
Shaun Pollock, who also played his domestic cricket at Kingsmead, has the most wickets in Tests at the ground with 44 scalps in 12 matches.
Proteas captain Graeme Smith after the win against India last year: "The wicket didn't make it easy for us. It's almost like we were back in India. The weather and the pitch made life a little more difficult.
"We had to work hard. To have the ability to turn it around and win like we did is a huge achievement."
South Africa coach Russell Domingo in 2011: "It looks pretty dry, which is probably not what we were expecting with the amount of rain they've had around.
"I know the nature of the pitch has changed over the last five or six years so we were thinking it would be a bit slower than what we've become accustomed to over the last ten years so it's going to be a hard Test match.
"It's not going to be a short 180-all-out game. It's going to be another tough Test under conditions which probably won't be of major benefit for us."
The first day might be the only one that will be affected by rain with the rest of the days looking good with temperatures varying from 25 – 29 degrees.
Kingsmead use to be known for it's bounce and carry in the early nineties with teams aften playing an all out pace attack when coming to Durban.
However over the last few years the surface has changed dramatically, with higher scores by the batsmen and spinners coming into the matches on Day four and five.
Silverwood unlikely to try Stokes-Buttler IPL job swap for England
Ben Stokes was promoted to the top of the order and Jos Buttler slotted in down at number five for Rajasthan Royals recently.
Rassie upbeat ahead of T20 series despite contrasting build-ups
South Africa have not played together since March while England had a full international programme over the summer.
India suffer double blow as Rohit and Ishant ruled out
India will have to do without the services of Rohit Sharma and Ishant Sharma during the first two Tests against Australia.
Sam Curran stars as England get creative in internal T20 practice match in Paarl
Jos Buttler’s XI coasted to victory over Eoin Morgan’s team, with a second target then hastily set to gain more practice time.
Kagiso Rabada reiterates BLM support as South Africa opt against taking knee
The Proteas will not take a knee during the forthcoming series against England.
Olly Stone ready to ‘bash down the door’ after England recall
The Warwickshire paceman was included in the one-day international squad against South Africa and impressed in an intra-squad warm-up game.
Sam Billings striving to make sure he keeps place in ‘phenomenal’ England side
Billings and Joe Root put on 103 for Jos Buttler’s XI in a 40-over intra-squad warm-up victory in Cape Town.
Joe Root hits decisive 77 as Jos Buttler’s team triumph in England warm-up match
The 23-man squad was split in two for the 40-over practice match in Cape Town, with Team Eoin Morgan challenging Team Buttler.