Sat, 08 May 2021

South Africa name three debutants, opt for first strike

10 Apr 2021, 22:43 GMT+10

Toss South Africa opt to bat vs Pakistan

South Africa captain Heinrich Klaasen opted to bat first after winning the toss in the first ODI against Pakistan in Johannesburg on Saturday, and have named three debutants for the game: Wihan Lubbe, Sisanda Magala and Lizaad Williams.

It's a depleted South African side, missing designated captain Temba Bavuma because of injury, and a number of first-choice players who have left for India to take part in the IPL. Klaasen, named leader once Bavuma was ruled out, decided to set a target for Pakistan on a pitch that looks conducive to big hitting.

The last time Pakistan visited South Africa for a T20I series, the home side won 2-1, winning the first two games after batting first before losing when they opted to chase in the final game.

Pakistan have resisted the temptation of throwing Sharjeel Khan into the mix, opting to stick with Mohammad Rizwan and Babar Azam at the top. Fakhar Zaman is slotted in at No. 3, with Mohammad Nawaz and Usman Qadir the spin-bowling options. Mohammad Hafeez is playing his 100th T20I.

South Africa: 1 Aiden Markram 2 Janneman Malan 3 Heinrich Klaasen (capt, wk) 4 Pite van Biljon 5 Wihan Lubbe 6 George Linde 7 Andile Phehlukwayo 8 Sisanda Magala 9 Beuran Hendricks 10 Lizaad Williams 11 Tabraiz Shamsi

Pakistan: 1 Mohammad Rizwan (wk) 2 Babar Azam (capt) 3 Fakhar Zaman 4 Mohammad Hafeez 5 Haider Ali 6 Mohammad Nawaz 7 Faheem Ashraf 8 Hasan Ali 9 Shaheen Afridi 10 Usman Qadir 11 Haris Rauf

Danyal Rasool is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo. @Danny61000

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