Team India will embark on its home season with the three-match T20 International series against South Africa starting on September 15. Both the teams will also lock horns in three Test matches from October 2. However, as far as the T20Is are concerned, the series opener in Dharamsala is under rain threat.
As per the MET, the heavens will open up two days ahead of the match and it will continue raining heavily. The sources in the know of developments feel that the ground staff at the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA) will have their task cut-out in the lead up to the first of the three-match series.
“The thing with the place is that once it starts raining, it goes on for a couple of days. The team is doing its job, but the problem is that you need at least around six or seven days leading into the game where the weather is perfect to prepare the wicket and with forecast for rain leading into the game on Sunday, sleepless nights are on the cards,” the source was quoted as saying by Hindustan Times.
Bowling friendly conditions to be on offer?
There is assistance to the fast bowlers generally in Dharamsala but with this being the T20 game, the curators are expected to dish out a batting surface. But with the constant rain expected in the lead up to the encounter, the groundsmen will hardly get any time for the preparation of the 22 yards.
“See, the conditions here anyway hand the faster bowlers a slight edge. But yes, if covers are on for long periods of time and the wicket doesn’t get enough sunlight, it will definitely slant more towards the faster bowlers. That could then lead to a situation where the ball dominates the bat,” the source further added.
India have rested their frontline bowlers Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar for this series and the new trio of fast bowlers Khaleel Ahmed, Deepak Chahar and Navdeep Saini will have to do the job if there is something in the surface for the pacers. On the other hand, South Africa have the likes of Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje and Junior Dala up their sleeve who can exploit the conditions with their pace.
However, for all the action to unfold, the rain shouldn’t play the spoilsport and the fans will be hoping for the weather to clear up by Sunday.