That's odd: South Africa back in India, Australia back in Australia
After a year of desolation and desperation, South Africa managed to win a series, by whitewashing an Australian side at home in an ODI series. Incidentally, it was the second successive time that South Africa had beaten Australia in all games of an ODI series at home, having won 5-0 in 2016. But all this was too much happiness for them to take, and they now embark on an India tour to keep themselves grounded. On a lighter note, South Africa's ODI teams have done fairly well in India.
Watch out for:
HEINRICH KLAASEN - He mesmerized everyone in the India ODI series in 2018 with a flurry of sweeps and reverse sweeps and is in fine form after the Australian ODIs where he shone with two half-centuries and a century in three matches and won the Man of the Series award.
Meanwhile, Australia and New Zealand engage in another series in Australia, this time in the ODI format. Having beaten India 3-0 in the ODIs in New Zealand, the Kiwis arrive with a completely contrasting result to that of the Aussies who were handed a 0-3 whitewash. When these sides meet in 50-overs cricket, sparks fly and one might expect no less from this very irrelevant series that could still draw attention.
Watch our for:
MITCHELL STARC - Starc returned from the South African tour early to watch Alyssa Healy blast India's Women's team in the Women's World Cup final and in the family competition that is getting close, he might want to inch ahead. The left-arm seamer had a good tour of South Africa where he consistently found success against their best batter and skipper, Quinton de Kock, cleaning him up thrice.
More of the Bangladesh show?
They thumped Zimbabwe 3-0 in the ODIs with Liton Das and Tamim Iqbal in top form. But as T20Is arrive, the bridge between the sides might just be smaller. That said, at home, Bangladesh hold all the aces and a whitewash similar to that in the ODIs is very much possible in this two-match series at Dhaka. If Zimbabwe can keep the top order silent, anything might happen, but again that's easier said than done.
Watch out for:
TAMIM IQBAL - Elevated to ODI captaincy after the stepping down of Mashrafe Mortaza, Tamim will have to work under Mahmudullah for the T20 series. The southpaw is in fantastic form, having notched up 158 and 128 in two of the three ODIs in the series. His quick starts could be equally important in the shortest format of the game.
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Feature image courtesy: AFP / Marco Longari