WI vs SA 1st Test – Match Preview
West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) has announced its international calendar for the summer of 2021 which begins with a two-match Test series against South Africa. West Indies have recalled some of their key players to be included in the Test squad vs South Africa. Shai Hope and Roston Chase both players will make their Test comeback in the series against Proteas. Skipper Kraigg Braithwaite and Jason Holder both are in good form and will look to continue their good run of form even against the Dean Elgar-led side.
Talking of their counterparts, South Africa has of late, struggled to beat the top teams in the longest format of the game. Under the captaincy of Quintom de Kock, SA lost an away Test series against Pakistan. However, the Proteas will be determined to make an afresh start under Dean Elgar, who'll be making his Test captaincy debut for South Africa in the first Test against West Indies. Elgar, along with some of his senior players in the team, will be aiming to make an upset over West Indies in their own backyard.
Before we take a look at WI vs SA Today’s Match Prediction, here’s a look at what does the first Test has to offer:
WI vs SA 1st Test – Probable Playing XIs
West Indies drew the last Test series against Sri Lanka and will be aiming to begin their home summer on a high against a weak SA outfit. Kraigg Braithwaite will again be a key player for the hosts and the team will expect a good start at the top of the order from their captain.
In the pace attack, Alzarri Joseph and Kemar Roach will hold the key along with Jason Holder. Spinner Rahkeem Cornwall and Spin all-rounder Roston Chase will have a big role to play in the first Test match.
Kraigg Braithwaite (c), Keiron Powell, Shai Hope (wk), Jermaine Blackwood, Darren Bravo, Kyle Mayers, Roston Chase, Jason Holder, Rahkeem Cornwall, Kemar Roach, Alzarri Joseph.
South Africa will have an opportunity to leave behind an unpleasant past and aim for glory against West Indies in the Tests. The team management has backed a few of their youngsters to take the team forward in the longest form of the game.
🇿🇦 🌴 The opening Test against @windiescricket gets underway on Thursday, 10 June
— Cricket South Africa (@OfficialCSA) June 8, 2021
Aiden Markram was the highest run-scorer for them in the series against Pakistan. Quinton De Kock, who is in really good white-ball form, will be expected to replicate his success in Tests, especially without any burden of captaincy on his shoulders. Temba Bavuma and Dean Elgar will be looked upon as two key batters to do the bulk of the scoring for the tourists. The trio of Rabada, Nortje, and Ngidi will be very important in the first Test match at St Lucia.
Dean Elgar (c), Aiden Markram, Rassie Van der Dussen, Temba Bavuma, Quinton De Kock (wk), Wiaan Mulder, George Linde, Keshav Maharaj, Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje, Lungi Ngidi.
WI vs SA Head to Head record in Test cricket
South Africa won: 18
West Indies won: 03
South Africa has proved too good for West Indies in the past. In the WI vs SA head-to-head records in Test cricket, Proteas enjoy a healthy lead with 18 wins out of 28 Tests played between the two teams. While records in the past don't really count, it will be interesting to see if South Africa can continue their head-to-head dominance over West Indies. However, the hosts have witnessed decent success in the past few years at their home turf.
WIN vs SA 1st Test Match- Players to Watch out for
Aiden Markram will be hungry to score runs against the West Indies. The right-handed batter has shown immense promise in his short career so far. However, he has failed to live up to the expectations, and hence, all eyes will be on him to come good in the upcoming series. Kagiso Rabada, one of the star performers of our game, will be another player to watch out for in South Africa. The speedster has witnessed a decent decline in his wicket-taking ability in the last year or so. Rabada will be raring to go and correct some of his recent stats developed in Test cricket.
In the opponent's camp, all eyes will be on Shai Hope. The No.3 batsman in the line-up, Hope is making a comeback in red-ball cricket. He will be a key player for the home team in the first Test match. The Caribbean team will also rely on their quicks. The experience of Kemar Roach will come in handy coupled with the pace and accuracy of Alzarri Joseph. Jason Holder, for the umpteenth time in his career, will be a vital cog in the wheel for West Indies.
WI vs SA Today Match Prediction – Who will win today’s Test match?
West Indies and South Africa are equally placed before the start of the first Test at St.Lucia. Both teams will count themselves as real contenders to take a 1-0 lead with a win in the first Test. Despite a better record against their opponents, South Africa might feel the heat due to their rent Test record away from home. As a result, West Indies might start as favorites to win today's WI vs SA first Test at St.Lucia.