Who: England v South Africa
When: 3 pm IST
Where: The Oval, London
Weather: Dry and Cloudy
After they forgetful campaign in 2015 where they finished third last in their group, the hosts are all set to start the 2019 World Cup as the favourites.
The work to build the team began four years ago and the efforts are seen as Eoin Morgan-led England is inarguably one of the best sides in the limited overs cricket right now.
Batting: Starting from the openers Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow, through the middle-order and Lower-order-Joe Root, Eoin Morgan, Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes, Jofra Archer- everyone can provide the difference with the bat except for Liam Plunkett( has 25 50+ scores in domestic), Adil Rashid (has 47 50+ scores in domestic) who knows how to hold the bat as well.
Considering the fact that the ground is going to be small, England definitely holds the edge with the batting as their players are in a great form too.
Bowling: The inclusion of Jofra Archer to the team has added advantage for England but yes, in the 50-over game, even if the players play out the complete 10 overs of Archer, they still have the chance of making a big total if there isn’t much support from the other end.
The semi-finalist in the 2015 World Cup would love to remove the ‘chockers’ tag as it has been around them for like forever.
Right before the tournament, South Africa was pushed back with the injury concerns for their pacers. The good news is that Rabada has recovered in time while Dale Steyn will miss the opener.
Batting: While England team consists of hitters, South African team doesn’t have many players who can hit the ball out the ground on a consistent basis. The team will be dependent on Quinton de Kock a lot for aggression whereas they would prefer Hasim Amla to play through the innings.
The team will hope that the experience of Faf Du Plessis and JP Duminy along with the presence of Aiden Markram and Chris Morris, the team can come out in flying colours.
Bowling: This is probably one of the best bowling attacks we would ever see in the World Cup. Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi has recovered for the injury and will be raring to go today and they will be backed well by Chris Morris, Andile Phehlukwayo and most importantly Imran Tahir will look to make sure that the absence of Steyn is not felt.
With the mix of both young and experience, South Africa can be the better team on their day.
Now, with the absence of Dale Steyn in the bowling attack, the predictor looks a 60-40 in the favour of England.
England: Jonny Bairstow, Jason Roy, Joe Root, Eoin Morgan, Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Moeen Ali, Jofra Archer, Chris Woakes, Liam Plunkett, Adil Rashid
South Africa: Quinton de Kock, Hashim Amla, Aiden Markram, Faf du Plessis, JP Duminy, David Miller, Chris Morris, Andile Phehlukwayo, Lungi Ngidi, Kagiso Rabada, Imran Tahir
England- Moeen Ali
South Africa- Andile Phehlukwayo
Player to watch out for:
Jofra Archer, Kagiso Rabada, Quinton de Kock, Jos Buttler, Jason Roy