Suryakumar Yadav not playing today: India faced with a tough task of picking a Playing XI from a 19-member ODI squad.
During the first ODI of the ongoing India’s tour of South Africa in Paarl, South Africa captain Temba Bavuma has won the toss and chose to bat.
“Wicket looks a bit dry. Would like to make use of the best of the batting conditions. Hopefully, it slows up and the slower bowlers can get in the game,” Bavuma told SuperSport at the toss.
“Hard to get away from the high of the Tests. But will have to focus on today, different format, have to ensure our basics are in touch. Opportunity for us as a one-day team to get our game in order.”
South Africa fast bowler Marco Jansen, who was one of their finds in the recently concluded three-match Test series, has been handed with an ODI debut at the Boland Park. The hosts have also included a couple of spinners in Keshav Maharaj and Tabraiz Shamsi.
Why is Suryakumar Yadav not playing vs South Africa?
Much like Bavuma, India stand-in captain Lokesh Rahul also wanted to bat first to make the most of the batting conditions today. Another common factor between both the teams is the presence of a debutant as the visitors have handed an ODI cap to all-rounder Venkatesh Iyer.
“Would’ve wanted to bat first. We’re always ready to do both things. Looks a little bit dry. Have some quality spinners in our attack. With [Jasprit] Bumrah and Bhuvi [Bhuvneshwar Kumar] starting, hopefully they’ll get a couple early with the swing. Venkatesh Iyer debuting, Shreyas Iyer to bat at four,” Rahul told SuperSport at the toss.
— BCCI (@BCCI) January 19, 2022
In his 30-match List A career, 27-year old Venkatesh Iyer has amassed 1,228 runs at an average and strike rate of 51.16 and 107.43 respectively. Iyer, who has four List A centuries and half-centuries to his name, has scored a career-best 198 (146) against Punjab in Indore last year.
A significant omission from India’s 19-member ODI squad is batter Suryakumar Yadav. Yadav, 31, had played 14 white-ball matches for India last year. While Rahul wasn’t asked about the rationale behind including Shreyas Iyer ahead of Yadav at No. 4, it appears that India have made a sensible decision of preferring a tried and tested No. 4 batter in Shreyas Iyer.