| On 3 weeks ago

Watch: Hardik Pandya in power-hitting mode ahead of ODI series against South Africa

South Africa toured the cricket crazy nation India not long ago and got a hammering in the test series. There was utter dominance by the home nation in which the Proteas suffered innings defeats in 2 of the 3 tests.

In the T20 series, they managed a solitary win and the series was level 1-1 with another game abandoned. Now after a gap of just over 4 months South Africa are in the Indian subcontinent for a 3 match ODI series.

Return of Hardik Pandya

The Indian team are bolstered by the return of their premium fast bowling all rounder in Hardik Pandya. He has been out of action with a broken back for the last 5 months and now returned to the squad after regaining full fitness. The return of Hardik just before IPL is ideal for India has he will get a few games under his belt and will look to be back to his best in IPL and then the world T20.

The Indian team management has closely monitored the fitness of the talented all rounder and has given him ample time to recover. Hardik Pandya was seen in full flow in his innings in a local Mumbai T20 game where he scored a century. Now he's with the squad in the nets sessions and BCCI official Twitter handle posted a video of his shot during the practice.

Different look to the sides

The Indian team that faced South Africa in September had more familiar faces. It was a settled Indian team with almost everyone that are expected to play in the world T20 featuring in that series. South Africa on the other hand were beginning to step in to the new era of Quinton De Kock captaincy and their team featured couple of debutants in the squad.

This time around it is a low key ODI series that is going to happen. With the T20 world cup coming soon ODI cricket is not looked at with much relevance atleast until the marquee event.

The 1st ODI will take place on 12th of March in Dharamsala

Balaji @deep_extracover

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