Team India will aim to begin their home leg of the ICC World Test Championship on a high when they take on South Africa in the first Test of the three-match series beginning on Wednesday at the ACA-VDCA Stadium.
However, the upcoming series against the Proteas will not be an easy one. The quality of the South African side, despite their inexperience, was visible in the T20I series which ended in a draw. And with the likes of Faf du Plessis coming into the line-up, the hosts can be rest assured to face stiff competition from the Proteas.
Kohli will not have the services of his premier pacer Jasprit Bumrah as the latter has been ruled out because of a stress fracture. However, the No. 1 ranked side will still have the services of Ishant Sharma and Mohammad Shami, who have been in great form in the last two years.
So with a lot riding on the game on Wednesday and a host of superstars taking to the field, here are a few suggestions for your Dream11 Playing 11.
Aiden Markram has very well performed in the build-up to this series and definitely deserves a chance in the fantasy XI along with Faf du Plessis. India captain Virat Kohli walks in any dream Test XI of the current era automatically, given the fact that he ranks 2nd in the ICC Test rankings. Virat will be accompanied by India’s rock-solid No.3 Cheteshwar Pujara.
After the exclusion of Rishabh Pant, Quinton de Kock, who has been South Africa’s best batsman in the Test format over the last year, becomes the automatic wicket-keeper.
Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja have played 28 Test matches together at home and they share 315 wickets among them in those. The duo also has some serious batting skills and can score vital runs down the order.
Ishant Sharma has been one of India’s premier Test bowlers since 2018 and is a must-have in the fantasy side. Kagiso Rabada, who spearheads South Africa’s bowling attack, also walks in any Dream 11 team. South Africa’s spinner Keshav Maharaj completes the fantasy team along with Mohammad Shami.
India vs South Africa Dream11 suggested Playing XI:
Aiden Markram, Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara (vice-captain), Faf Du Plessis, Quinton de Kock, Ravichandran Ashwin (captain), Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammad Shami, Kagiso Rabada, Ishant Sharma, Keshav Maharaj
India playing XI for 1st Test: Virat Kohli (Capt), Ajinkya Rahane (VC), Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Hanuma Vihari, R Ashwin, R Jadeja, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Ishant Sharma, Md Shami
South Africa (squad): Faf du Plessis ©, Aiden Markram, Dean Elgar, Temba Bavuma, Theunis de Bruyn, Zubayr Hamza, Vernon Philander, Quinton de Kock, Heinrich Klassen, Keshav Maharaj, Lungi Ngidi, Senuran Muthusamy, Anrich Nortje, Dane Piedt, and Kagiso Rabada.South Africa (probable): 1. Quinton de Kock (capt wk), Reeza Hendricks, Temba Bavuma, Rassie van der Dussen, David Miller, Andile Phehlukwayo, Dwaine Pretorius, Bjorn Fortuin/George Linde, Kagiso Rabada, Junior Dala/Anrich Nortje, Tabraiz Shamsi