With less than three months till the T20 World Cup 2022 starts in the middle of October in Australia, the participating teams are busy getting ready for the main event. The ENG vs SA 2022 three-match Twenty20 International series will act as a dress rehearsal for the forthcoming World Cup for both the teams. They can test their weaknesses and strengths by giving chances to the players who are considered for the main event. The first match preview of the twenty20 international series is discussed in this article.
England vs South Africa T20I Series 2022: 1st Match Preview
The T20I series-opening match between England and South Africa will be held at the county ground in Bristol on July 27 (Wednesday). The match is slated to start at 11.30 p.m. (Bangladesh Standard Time). The remaining two matches will be held on July 28 and July 31 in Cardiff and Southampton, respectively.
England have never lost a match at the county ground in Bristol, winning all three matches they have played here at this venue. Oppositely, South Africa have yet to play a match in Bristol. The England T20I team leads the head-to-head battle with 11 victories. Besides, England have won the last three bilateral series between the two sides.
Overall T20I record between England and South Africa (as on July 26, 2022)
|Matches||England Win||South Africa Win||No Result|
Not having Ben Stokes in the team is a major loss for the English campaign in the ENG vs SA 2022 T20I Series. The absence of Stokes in the squad has opened the door for others to showcase their abilities on the international stage and make a statement to the selectors for considering England’s World Cup squad.
Phil Salt, Sam Curran, Harry Brook, and David Willey will fight for two places in the lower middle-order, where batters are required to be more aggressive for a perfect finish. The competition will be between them to find a place in the playing XI. Two will be seen playing the first match in Bristol. If anyone fails, they can be dropped for the second contest.
England have a settled top order, including Bairstow and Livingstone, who come at no.4 and 5 respectively. Reece Topley is now an automatic choice after his recent performances in the white-ball series. Besides, Chris Jordan and Adil Rashid are regular members of England’s T20 side.
Predicted Playing XI
Top-Order: Jason Roy, Jos Buttler (captain & wicket-keeper), Dawid Malan;
Middle-Order: Jonny Bairstow, Liam Livingstone, Phil Salt, Moeen Ali, Sam Curran;
Lower-Order: Chris Jordan, Adil Rashid, Reece Topley.
Regular captain Temba Bavuma will miss the T20I series against England due to an elbow injury. Stand-in captain David Miller is one of the most sought-after twenty20 players in the world right now. He just needs to instill confidence in the players that they are a competitive side to overcome England in their own backyard.
South Africa’s T20 side’s recent performance has been encouraging, winning six out of ten matches they have played since last year's T20 World Cup. The team has some world-class power hitters and lethal pacers who have the ability to take the game away from the opposition on their own.
Quinton de Kock, Van der Dussen, Markram, and Miller can be ruthless against the opposition. In bowling, Rabada, Ngidi, and Nortje are well-equipped pacers for the shortest format of the game. The Proteas team management may find it difficult to pick a spinner from Shamsi and Maharaj.
Predicted Playing XI
Top-Order: Quinton de Kock (wicket-keeper), Rilee Rossouw, Rassie van der Dussen;
Middle-Order: Aiden Markram, Heinrich Klaasen, David Miller (captain), Dwaine Pretorius, Tabraiz Shamsi;
Lower-Order: Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje, Lungi Ngidi.
Bristol’s weather forecast & toss prediction
There is no chance of rain in Bristol on Wednesday, and the weather is expected to be cloudy and cool, ideal for a T20 match. Batters can rule over bowlers on this ground. However, those who have variety in bowling can find a way to stop the batters and get success from Bristol’s wicket.
Jos Buttler has failed to lead England to a series victory since taking over as the country's permanent white-ball formats captain. The Buttler-led England team has won four matches and lost five, including two series losses to the Rohid-led Indian side. He will be desperate to clinch the ENG vs SA 2022 T20I Series and find the right combination for the shorter-version of the game.
David Miller has led South Africa twice in the Twenty20 format, with one victory and one defeat. It’s an opportunity for Miller to showcase his leadership ability against quality opposition. If he succeeds, the South African cricket board may consider him to do the role on a permanent basis in the future.