India vs South Africa, Cricket World Cup 2019, Match 8: Rohit Sharma went past Sourav Ganguly and also became the first Asian batsman to hit a hundred in this World Cup so far, as India cruised to a six-wicket victory over South Africa to get their campaign off to a glittering start at The Rose Bowl on Wednesday. After Yuzvendra Chahal snared four wickets to restrict South Africa to 227/9, Rohit carried his bat with an unbeaten 122 off 144 balls, his innings studded with 13 fours and two sixes. Rohit, the only cricketer to score three double hundreds in ODIs, now has 23 ODI hundreds — only 8 batsmen have scored more ODI centuries than India’s talismanic opening batsman and vice-captain. Rohit also went past former India skipper Ganguly’s tally of 22 hundreds in the 50-over format. Chasing a modest 228 for victory, India were fortunate to not lose one of their openers as the ball ballooned up in the air on three occasions early on but to no avail. Rohit was dropped when he was batting on 1 by Faf Du Plessis off Kagiso Rabada (2/39) at second slip. (LIVE SCORECARD)
2:45 IST: We are minutes away from the start of the match. Stay tuned!
2: 37 IST: Here’s the playing XI for India vs South Africa-
2:35 IST: Faf du Plessis has won the toss for South Africa, they will bat first against Kohli-led India.
2:05 IST: Team India is set for their opening clash against South Africa. Both the teams are warming up. Stay tuned for the toss which will take place in 20 minutes.
1:45 IST: Team India has arrived at Southampton’s Rose Bowl stadium.
Brief Preview: In his quest to become the third Indian captain to lift the World Cup trophy, Virat Kohli will not only lead the Men in Blue in England but carry the hopes of more than a billion fans. Facing an exhausted Proteas team who have lost after conceding 300-plus runs in both their matches and are suffering injury woes, the task for Team India would not be earth-shattering. However, given the quality of players that fill the South African dressing room, India should also not take them lightly in any manner.
The current team does have potent match-winners with the skipper himself being the biggest of them all but it still misses the aura, the ‘class of 2011’ under Mahendra Singh Dhoni had. Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, Yuvraj Singh, Gautam Gambhir, Zaheer Khan, and Harbhajan Singh were in a different league with the supporting cast comprising Munaf Patel, Ashish Nehra, Suresh Raina and a young Kohli.
But this team, led by Kohli and mentored by Dhoni, has had its share of good results and six wins in nine games would ensure a smooth passage into the semi-finals. Two years of investment has gone into building a potent ODI squad, something that started right after the 2017 Champions Trophy final loss against Pakistan.
The ‘Men In Blue’ have had adequate rest. All other teams have already played two games each and they can’t wait to kick-start their campaign with a commanding performance. The first match in a tournament of such vast magnitude is always important and South Africa’s confidence will be at its lowest following back-to-back defeats against England and Bangladesh. (Read Full Preview Here)
India: Virat Kohli (C), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, Mahendra Singh Dhoni (wk), Hardik Pandya, Kedar Jadhav, Vijay Shankar, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Dinesh Karthik, Ravindra Jadeja
South Africa: Faf du Plessis (C), Quinton de Kock (wk), Aiden Markram, Hashim Amla, JP Duminy, David Miller, Beuran Hendricks , Kagiso Rabada, Dwaine Pertorius, Andile Phehlukwayo, Tabraiz Shamshi, Imran Tahir, Lungi Ngidi, Chris Morris, Rassie van der Dussen.