India wins toss, opts to bat first, Shahbaz Nadeem makes debut

Ranchi: India won the toss and elected to bat first in the third Test of the three-match series against South Africa on Saturday here at the JSCA International Stadium Complex in Ranchi.

South Africa’s skipper Faf du Plessis brought out Temba Bavuma as proxy captain to change the side’s luck for the toss, but Kohli ended up winning it for the third time in a row.

Virat Kohli-led side handed the debut cap to Shahbaz Nadeem. On the other hand, Proteas skipper announced that Quinton de Kock would be opening the batting for the side in place of Aiden Markram.

Nadeem is only the second cricketer in the history of Ranji Trophy to take 50 wickets in a season twice, having taken 51 in 2015-16.

India’s playing XI: Virat Kohli (c), Ajinkya Rahane (vc), Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Shahbaz Nadeem, Mohammad Shami, Umesh Yadav.

South Africa’s playing XI: Dean Elgar, Quinton de Kock, Zubayr Hamza, Faf du Plessis (c), Temba Bavuma, Heinrich Klaasen, Dane Piedt, George Linde, Anrich Nortje, Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi.

India has already clinched the three-Test series, as they have a 2-0 lead going into the final match.

The Virat Kohli-led side defeated Proteas in the first two Tests at Visakhapatnam and Pune.

South Africa had to endure a 203-run loss in the first Test while they lost the second Test by an innings and 137 runs.

After winning the second Test, India recorded its 11th consecutive home Test series win and this is now a record in the longest format of the game.

India is now also at the top of the World Test Championship standings with 200 points from four matches.