Day 3, Call 3: Most runs in PP, India vs South Africa – India to win
Difficulty Level: Medium
India in Batting PP under Rahul Dravid (since Nov 9, 2021): Inn – 12, Runs – 583, Avg – 83.3, SR – 135
Major T20I teams since Nov 9, 2021: Sorted by Strike Rate
As it can be observed from the table, India are the best team in terms of powerplay scoring rate in T20Is since Rahul Dravid took over as head coach. This is a definite improvement in intent from the previous number of 126, which was their PP strike rate against major T20I teams in the 22 months building up to the takeover.
And in addition to that, they are also one of the 3 most economical bowling units in the powerplay in this period, with only Bangladesh and Afghanistan, courtesy of playing on more helpful decks and against weaker opponents respectively, faring better than them.
Major T20I teams since Nov 9, 2021: Sorted by Economy Rate
So not only are India doing well but also are aided by South Africa being one of the weakest teams in both batting and bowling powerplay to help us with this call going in our favour. India have picked up 21 wickets in the first 6 overs in this period, averaging an impressive 24 runs per wicket. A lot of it is courtesy of Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who has picked 8 of those wickets and has conceded at just 5.4 RPO.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar in T20I PP since Nov 9, 2021: Inn – 10, Overs – 22, Wickets – 8, Avg – 15, ER – 5.4
South Africa’s batting powerplay struggles, on the other hand, are primarily a result of their captain Temba Bavuma’s limitations in this format.
Temba Bavuma in PP in T20Is: Inn – 21, Runs – 209, Outs – 11, Avg – 19, SR – 105
Potential disruptor: Quinton de Kock being fit for the game is SA’s best chance to spoil the prediction, as the left-hander is one of the world’s most aggressive PP batters.
Highest PP SR in T20Is since 2020 (min 200 balls): Evin Lewis – 161, QdK – 153, Rohit Sharma – 151
Call 4: Most sixes, India vs South Africa – India to win
Difficulty Level: Medium
Despite trailing 1-2, India have hit 27 sixes in this series so far, 2 more than South Africa, averaging 9 sixes per match. They have managed to achieve that despite minimal contributions towards the six-count from Pant (2), Pandya (3) and Karthik (2), who are all capable of clearing the boundaries easily. With the Rishabh Pant-led team opening their account in the last game, you can expect them to be high on confidence and build on the momentum gained to level the series today, especially if de Kock is not fit.
Shreyas Iyer indicated in his interview after the first match that India’s approach towards T20I batting has changed for the better. You can exploit that in your favour with these two predictions.