There’s a lot of noise around South Africa’s fast and bouncy pitches being a challenge for Indian batters, but stand-in skipper Suryakumar Yadav is not worried about how the tracks will behave in the upcoming T20I series. The three-match series between India and South Africa will begin on 10 December, with the first game at Kingsmead, Durban.
Rinku Singh has already spoken about the need to get used to the South African pitches, but SKY believes the key to success in the Rainbow Nation is “to be yourself”.
“I think the key to success on such wickets will be to be yourself. The boys have prepared well. We are coming from a good T20I series win and have played on all fast tracks and all batters have played on such wickets. They will enjoy playing here in South Africa,” Suryakumar said in the pre-series press conference.
Talking about what would be Team India’s approach in the series, SKY said Men in Blue will look to play “fearless” cricket, something that also helped the young team beat Australia 4-1 in the absence of heavyweights like Hardik Pandya, Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli.
“The players put their hands up against Australia and came up with fearless cricket, and we need to play the same against South Africa. I just told them (players) to do exactly what they do in franchise cricket,” he said.
With Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill, Ruturaj Gaikwad and Ishan Kishan in the squad, there’s a lot of confusion about who would be India’s first-choice openers. Suryakumar refused to give any sort of a hint at the probable combination.
“We have the combination in mind. We know who are going to open tomorrow, and perhaps, will take a final call after the practice session today. Yes, we have enough sixth bowler options in this side to bank upon,” he said.
India are playing just six T20Is from now on till the 2024 T20 World Cup 2024 in June, but SKY said it was not an issue as there will also be IPL 2024 in between.
“Yes there are limited T20Is but we will also have 14 league game in IPL [IPL 2024] as well. Players have a lot of game under their belt. So we don’t think there’ll be an issue”, Suryakumar said.
“Everyone knows their role really well, knows their responsibilities really well, how they play in different situations.”