As a sport that is characterised by setting precedents for fixtures on a weekly basis, the fact that South Africa remained in India to play an ODI series against an Indian B team while the Indian T20 squad travelled to Australia for the T20 World Cup set a new standard in the sport.
The Proteas, on the other hand, are desperate for points in order to qualify automatically for the World Cup in India next year, and they face a must-win game in the series finale in Delhi on Tuesday before heading to Sydney.
They will certainly have to compete in the second qualifying round in Harare next year, alongside Ireland, Scotland, the UAE, and the Netherlands. So, how did this happen?
Considering that the World Test Championship is a far cry from perfect, with each team playing just six others in three series at home, three at away, the Super League was designed with four series at home, and four series on the road.
There was no science as to who played whom.
It was just a matter of determining which teams were available and then integrating the three-match series into an already-packed international calendar. South Africa was assigned home series against England, Pakistan, the Netherlands, and Bangladesh, as well as away series against Ireland, Sri Lanka, India, and Australia.
It was deemed a “fair” draw, with an even distribution of major and minor opponents.
Winners Are Grinners! ☺️
Captain @SDhawan25 lifts the trophy as #TeamIndia win the ODI series 2️⃣-1️⃣ against South Africa 👏👏#INDvSA | @mastercardindia pic.twitter.com/igNogsVvqd
— BCCI (@BCCI) October 11, 2022
So, what went wrong? The explanation is a combination of bad luck (including weather), dubious decision-making, some very awful performances, and a dash of complacency.
Live scorecard for the 3rd ODI between India and South Africa
After winning the toss, India will bowl first against South Africa in the third one-day international. David Miller leads South Africa.
The series is now tied at 1-1, and both clubs would like to win it. There isn’t much separating these two squads.
Let’s go to this ODI to see what occurs in this blockbuster.
A look at the playing XIs
South Africa XI: Quinton de Kock, Janneman Malan, Reeza Hendricks, Aiden Markram, Heinrich Klaasen, David Miller, Marco Jansen, Andile Phehlukwayo, Bjorn Fortuin, Anrich Nortje, Lungi Ngidi
India XI: Shikhar Dhawan, Shubman Gill, Ishan Kishan, Shreyas Iyer, Sanju Samson, Washington Sundar, Shahbaz Ahmed, Shardul Thakur, Kuldeep Yadav, Avesh Khan, Mohammed Siraj