While India’s 18-man lineup seems to be absolutely stunning, there are five players to keep an eye on in the Indian camp:

1) Hardik Pandya: In the IPL final versus Rajasthan, Hardik Pandya gave one of the most significant all-round performances in the tournament’s history. The Gujarat Titans captain was dogged by questions about his fitness heading into the season, but Pandya stomped them out of the park as he led his team to the championship in front of his home fans. Hardik finished the season with 487 runs and 8 wickets, and he is full of confidence heading into the T20I series. There’s no disputing that this capable all-rounder will be the center of attention.

2) KL Rahul: KL Rahul’s leadership skills, as well as his batting, have garnered him a lot of praise, and all of that was on show during the Lucknow Super Giants’ IPL 2022 campaign. Rahul had a fantastic season, despite not being on the winning side in the ‘Eliminator’ versus Royal Challengers Bangalore. The first hitter, who has a batting average of 51.33 and a strike rate of 135.38, enters the series with a lot of confidence and form.

3) Dinesh Karthik: In a return unlike any other, Dinesh Karthik not only knocked on the door of selection but smashed it wide open with a brilliant IPL performance. The out-of-favor wicketkeeper-batsman, who won the IPL’s ‘Super Striker of the Season’ title with a mind-boggling strike rate of 183, defied his ‘finisher’ label once again. Karthik will hope to repeat his accomplishments with the Indian jersey, having scored 330 runs at an average of 55.

4) Umran Malik: The Sunrisers Hyderabad pace machine from Jammu and Kashmir drew everyone’s attention with his blistering pace, which saw the 22-year-old hit 150 km per hour in every match. Umran had the record for delivering the fastest ball of the season until Lockie Ferguson stole it with a 157.3 kmph thunderbolt in the IPL final. Umran took 22 wickets in 14 IPL matches, including a five-wicket haul against Gujarat Titans. The kid had then returned with a 5/25 record, the greatest in the league’s history. Legends of the game have endorsed this fire bowler, and it will be interesting to see whether he can keep up with South Africa’s pace.

5) Arshdeep Singh: Another promising prospect to emerge from the Punjab Kings’ camp was Arshdeep Singh. The 23-year-old was the Punjab Kings’ go-to death-over bowler, with toe crushers and the ability to throw wide yorkers in his repertoire. Arshdeep concluded the season with 10 wickets in 14 matches, the highest of which was 3/37 with a 7.70 economy rate. He’ll be keen to continue in this shape throughout the series.