South Africa and Pakistan are ready to clash in the first Test of the three-match series in Centurion starting Wednesday. The home side will enter the contest as the firm favourite, with a great record against the opposition in this format, especially while playing at home.
The Proteas are coming into this series after a lengthy break in international cricket and the players busy in playing the inaugural edition of the Mzansi Super League (MSL), therefore, their patience will be put to test against a team who have played five Tests in last two months against Australia and New Zealand. In the batting department, the home team will be depending on the likes of captain Faf du Plessis, Aiden Markram and Quinton de Kock to score bulk of the runs. It will be interesting to see how veteran Hashim Amla will perform in this series as he looked rusty and out of touch after returning from a lengthy injury layoff in the MSL. In the bowling department, the onus will be once again on the pace trio of Kagiso Rabada, Dale Steyn and Duanne Olivier to do bulk of the damage, whereas they will be accompanied by left-arm spin of Keshav Maharaj.
On the other hand, the visitors will be depending on the likes of veteran duo of Azhar Ali and Asad Shafiq to lead from the front in the batting department and score bulk of the runs, whereas in the bowling department, the onus will be on the likes