India in South Africa 2013-14, ODI series December 4, 2013

Indian batsmen seek to repair poor averages

Shiva Jayaraman
Stats preview of the ODI series between South Africa and India

India are currently on a roll in ODIs, having won their last-four ODI series played away from home, but they will be posed with a much stiffer challenge this time around. India have never been happy tourists to South Africa, having won only two of the last-ten ODIs they have played against them at their home. Their overall away record in ODIs against South Africa reads even worse: India have managed to win just five out of the 25 ODIs against them. Unsurprisingly, India's win-loss ratio of 0.26 against South Africa is their worst against the top ODI teams away from home. They have played three bilateral ODI series against South Africa in South Africa and are yet to register a series win. In fact, South Africa is the only country where India haven't won an ODI series.

Part of India's poor performances there can be attributed to the fact that South Africa have themselves been resilient at home. Till late 2009, Australia were the only to team to win a bilateral series against South Africa in South Africa. From October 2002 to November 2009, South Africa won 17 consecutive bilateral series. But since their loss to England in November 2009, South Africa have lost four of the seven bilateral ODI series they have played against major ODI-teams at home- to Australia, New Zealand, Pakistan and England.

South Africa's ODI series record before and after November 2009
  Played Won Drawn Lost win-% Teams lost to
Before England series 26 23 1 2 88% Australia
Since England series 8 4 0 4 50% Australia, England, New Zealand, Pakistan

The Indian batsmen haven't fared particularly well playing against South Africa in ODIs away from home. MS Dhoni is the top scorer with 214 runs at 23.77 from nine innings, while Rohit Sharma's five innings here have yielded just 49 runs and a top score of 23. Yuvraj Singh averages 16.66 from nine matches and has only one fifty-plus score, and Suresh Raina, the other batsman in India's middleorder has scored a paltry 115 runs at 19.16 from six innings, and is yet to hit a fifty. Virat Kohli is the only batsman with some semblance of success: he has 193 runs at 48.25 from five innings with two fifties.

India batsmen against South Africa in South Africa
Batsman Mat Inns NO Runs Ave HS 100s 50s
MS Dhoni 9 9 0 214 23.77 55 0 1
Virat Kohli 5 5 1 193 48.25 87* 0 2
Yuvraj Singh 9 9 0 150 16.66 53 0 1
Suresh Raina 6 6 0 115 19.16 37 0 0
Rohit Sharma 5 5 0 49 9.80 23 0 0

South Africa's batsmen have had reasonable success playing against India at home. Jacques Kallis has hit 519 runs against India from 11 innings at 64.00. Hashim Amla and JP Duminy, both average more than 60 against India playing in South Africa. South Africa captain Ab de Villiers' however has only a disappointing 119 at 22.80 from five innings. But these numbers may not mean much considering that since their last series against India at home, he has scored 835 ODI runs - the highest by any South Africa batsman - at 83.50 in South Africa.

South Africa batsmen against India in ODIs at home
Batsman Mat Inns NO Runs HS Ave 100s 50s
Jacques Kallis 12 11 3 512 119* 64.00 1 2
AB de Villiers 9 9 1 289 92* 36.12 0 2
Hashim Amla 5 5 1 250 116* 62.50 1 2
JP Duminy 5 5 1 244 73 61.00 0 3
Graeme Smith 9 9 0 236 79 26.22 0 2
Faf du Plessis 3 3 0 69 60 23.00 0 1
David Miller 2 2 0 36 27 18.00 0 0

South Africa's bowlers have clearly had the better of Indian batsmen ny playing on pace-friendly conditions in home. Lonwabo Tsotsobe, Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel, all average less than 20 against India in South Africa. Tsotsobe is the leading wicket-taker- 13 wickets at 13.53 with two four-fors in five matches.

South Africa bowlers against India in ODIs at home
Bowler Mat Wkts BBI Ave Econ SR 4w  5w 
Lonwabo Tsotsobe 5 13 4/22 13.53 4.19 19.3 2 0
Morne Morkel 5 12 4/52 11.41 3.70 18.5 1 0
Jacques Kallis 12 11 3/3 36.63 4.78 45.9 0 0
Dale Steyn 5 8 2/29 17.75 3.70 28.7 0 0

The current bowlers in the Indian team haven't had much experience playing against South Africa away from home, as Ishant Sharma and R Ashwin are the only full-time bowlers in the squad to have bowled in South Africa before. Yuvraj Singh is the highest wicket-taker for India with five wickets from six innings. Overall, Zaheer Khan - who is part of the Test-squad but doesn't find a place in the ODI-squad - is the leading wicket-taker for India in South Africa with 15 wickets at 27 apiece from nine matches.

India bowlers against South Africa in South Africa
Bowler Mat Wkts BBI Ave Econ SR 4w 5w 
Yuvraj Singh 9 5 3/34 34.60 4.80 43.2 0 0
Rohit Sharma 5 3 2/30 22.33 4.78 28.0 0 0
Suresh Raina 6 1 1/21 82.00 5.12 96.0 0 0

India are starting their campaign at the venue where they beat South Africa the last time they played an ODI here. India may also get encouragement from the fact that the New Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg is the venue where South Africa have one of their worst win-loss records at home in ODIs.

Shiva Jayaraman is a sub-editor (stats) at

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy on December 7, 2013, 10:01 GMT

    Bcci have to also focus on bowling area....

  • shashank on December 5, 2013, 17:58 GMT

    Wait......First of all tell captain of indian team MSD that average should be bettered by scoring runs when the match is quite open,neither by returning not out,nor by scoring runs when the result gets clear.Absolutely...Have a look at his averages simply(not considering not outs) and then with not outs,the difference is a great 16,considering he usually goes out for batting,india's percentage of winning is not that much high,and he has not won man of the matches for a good no. of times,even then when he is a finisher and has such a high average.

  • Dummy4 on December 5, 2013, 17:07 GMT

    Getting the Batting order right is going to be vital as India plans for WC'15. With Aus pitches bouncing; there should be no place for Yuvraj & Raina. Also, Kohli is the heartbeat of this batting unit and needs to be at #4; not #3 where he'll be vulnerable to the new ball. And finally; get Rohit out of the Opening spot. It was an experiment that worked and helped his confidence but he's born for the middle order. You'll also need Pujara - can't drop a batter of his class for ODIs - same mistake as was done with Laxman a decade back (thes guys are fast scores in Tests!) Order: Dhawan, Rahane, Pujara, Kohli, Sharma, Dhoni, Jadeja

  • Faraz on December 5, 2013, 16:14 GMT

    a little bounce on wicket and facing fast bowlers... Indians again proved them as pathetic as ever on matches away from home....

  • Dummy4 on December 5, 2013, 11:16 GMT

    @EnglishCricket : That's a ridiculous statement.You cannot consider the entire population to be as privileged as the ones who are bred over a decade as in England. We try to make the best of the resources available and they are the TOP batsmen . The world knows it. I do not think England will ever have talents like Sachin, Ganguly ,Dravid ,Laxman and many more who are still marching on that footpath and humble by nature as well.

  • Dummy4 on December 5, 2013, 11:13 GMT

    I think people forgot the India team performance in Chmapions trophy and that too in England .. I know the Indian teams record in South Africa is not good but that also includes matches when India were not Good tourists.. I want Indian team to put a great show and win theis series...Even if you guys remember last test series drew 1 -1 the 3rd test match which was draw Indian team had better chance to win guys please refrain from sayitn that south Africa can beat India easily...

  • sidh on December 5, 2013, 11:00 GMT

    dear peter jones india win CB series in australia defeat australia wich have players like ponting clarke hayden gilchirst symomd lee in two straight finals.if pitches are flat and ground are small then why not aus win in india.plz check avg. of ponting india beloe 30 in so called easy conditions

  • Android on December 5, 2013, 10:53 GMT

    @brad...let us see...

  • Dummy4 on December 5, 2013, 9:52 GMT

    Good luck for indians..They will definitely cry after this series..

  • sandeep on December 5, 2013, 9:37 GMT

    I know India's record in SA is very poor. But after watching current performance of Indian team, this time India will definitely do well and win the series as we have done in other countries also.

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