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South Africa vs England 2nd Test Preview: Proteas Look to Carry Forward Momentum After First Win in World Test Championship

South Africa registered their maiden win in the World Test Championship by beating England in the first Test of the four-Test match series in Centurion. A Dale-Steyn less attack humbled their counterparts by 107 runs with Quinton de Kock winning the Man of the Match award for his contribution with the bat (95 & 34) in both the innings. Besides that, he took eight catches in the Test match. Interestingly, this was the sixth straight win for the Proteasin Centurion, while England are still looking for their first win at the venue since 2000.

South Africa’s journey in the World Test Championship so far has been a tough one. They were whitewashed by Team India in their first very Test series, which started their journey in the WTC. This win thus will come as a huge morale boost for the side and will lift their spirits for the remainder of the championship. Playing at home, they are a tough team to beat and they can use the lead in the series in a big way to their advantage.

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Despite missing Steyn, the likes of Rabada, Philander and Nortje have stood up to the occasion. The Test match which was dominated by pacers, the South African pace trio took 17 out of the 20 England wickets. In the second Test match in Cape Town, which is quite similar to what the wicket is in Centurion, the pacers from both sides are expected to define the game again.

An unchanged XI from South Africa is very likely to take the field when the Test match starts in Newlands from Friday.

Also Read: India’s schedule in the ICC World Test Championship

England’s journey in the World Test Championship started with the Ashes series in Australia in August last year after the 2019 ICC World Cup. The closely contested series ended 2-2 after both the teams displayed immense competition in the way they played. England then toured New Zealand for a two-Test match series which they lost 1-0. England and South Africa are placed sixth and seventh in the WTC points table at the moment.

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While England have won two matches out of the six played, South Africa as said earlier, registered their first win in the competition. This series will thus be a defining one for both teams as it is their big chance to break into the top four. Despite the bowlers having an upper hand in the series so far, the cricket on view has been competitive so far. Batsmen from both teams have played with intent and determination and have done the hard work for runs.

Despite England’s loss, it is highly unlikely that they will change the composition of their side too as they will need their experienced players to help their team bounce back in the series.

Also Read: ICC World Test Championship 2019-21 Points Table & Team Standings

With a Test-series win at stake, going forward we can only expect some more competitive cricket from both teams.

Squads:

South Africa:

Faf du Plessis (capt), Temba Bavuma, Quinton de Kock (wk), Dean Elgar, Beuran Hendricks, Keshav Maharaj, Pieter Malan, Zubayr Hamza, Anrich Nortje, Dane Paterson, Keegan Petersen, Andile Phehlukwayo, Vernon Philander, Dwaine Pretorius, Kagiso Rabada, Rudi Second (wk), Rassie van der Dussen.

England:

Joe Root (capt), James Anderson, Jofra Archer, Jonny Bairstow (wk), Dominic Bess, Stuart Broad, Rory Burns, Jos Buttler (wk), Zak Crawley, Sam Curran, Joe Denly, Jack Leach, Craig Overton, Matthew Parkinson, Ollie Pope (wk), Dom Sibley, Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood.

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