ICC Champions Trophy 2017: India vs South Africa – IND’s strengths

ICC Champions Trophy 2017: India vs South Africa – IND’s strengths

Champions Trophy 2017: Virat Kohli calls for calm India display against South Africa

India v South Africa preview: Kohli has his task cut out

India vs South Africa: Teams downplay nerves for ICC Champions Trophy clash

Virat Kohli scored 81 not out to help India beat Pakistan
Virat Kohli scored 81 not out to help India beat Pakistan in their opening game

India v South Africa, ICC Champions Trophy Group B

 

Venue: Oval Date: 11 June, 10:30 BST
Coverage: Live Test Match Special radio and text commentary on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra & BBC Sport website, plus desktop, tablets, mobiles and app.

India must keep their emotions under control in Sunday’s decisive Champions Trophy match against South Africa, captain Virat Kohli has warned.

With all three sides in Group B on two points, the loser of the match at The Oval will be eliminated.

Kohli’s side, ranked third, came into this tournament as holders and were seen by many as potential winners.

“The team that has the most composure will have a better chance of winning of the game tomorrow,” said Kohli.

“You need to have a good balance of being competitive, being passionate about the game, but at the same time, not getting over-excited.

“A lot of times, teams come in and they want to do something special and end up messing up the game in important situations.

“That’s what I’ve experienced in the past, and you tend to get over-excited, and then you commit errors that can cost the team important runs.”

To the victors belong the spoils

Champions Trophy Group B

India beat fierce rivals Pakistan in their opening game but suffered a seven-wicket defeat by Sri Lanka in their second game on Thursday to leave them requiring a win on Sunday to reach the last four.

World number one side South Africa also have one win from their two matches and will reach the semis themselves with a victory in south London.

Pakistan and Sri Lanka began the Champions Trophy as underdogs but a big win each means they too face essentially a knockout game against each other on Monday.

“For us as a team, it’s a very important game, yes,” added Kohli. “So it is the same for South Africa as well.

“As a cricketer, honestly, I crave games like this. You want to be part of matches that are as important as this one. Then if you perform in that and your team gets across the line, it’s a different feeling.”

Group B permutations
India will qualify if… They beat South Africa or if the game is abandoned
South Africa will qualify if… They beat India or if both games are abandoned
Sri Lanka will qualify if… They beat Pakistan or if their game is abandoned and there is a result in the game between India and South Africa
Pakistan will qualify if… They beat Sri Lanka

‘Proteas better when they are relaxed’

AB de Villiers (right)
AB de Villiers (right) has scored four runs in two innings this tournament

South Africa captain AB de Villiers has struggled with the bat so far at this tournament, scoring four against Sri Lanka before suffering the first golden duck in 221 ODIs in the second game against Pakistan.

“I’m still in good form. Still hitting the ball well, as always,” said De Villiers.

“It’s just a matter of going out and doing it. There’s nothing I can say here that’s going to change anything except for that I still believe I can and hopefully I’ll prove that tomorrow.”

South Africa haven’t made the Champions Trophy final since winning the inaugural edition in 1998 and De Villiers, like Kohli, is calling for a composed display from his team.

“It is a must-win game, but we’ve played quite a few of them in the last 12 to 18 months and we’ve had a lot of success in those must-win games,” added the 33-year-old.

“The guys generally perform better if they are relaxed in their mind sets and not too tense. That’s partly my responsibility, to make sure there’s no panic.

“It’s really important to stay calm, not get over-excited. The tendency will be there, because we all live for these kinds of moments.

“That’s why we play cricket. We want to play on the big stage against the big teams and tomorrow is one of those games.”

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