South Africa wins toss, opts to bowl in fifth T20 vs India

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BENGALURU, India (AP) — India lost its fifth consecutive toss and South Africa opted to bowl first on Sunday in the fifth and final game of their Twenty20 series.

With South Africa’s Temba Bavuma ruled out due to an elbow injury, stand-in skipper Keshav Maharaj opted to put India in to bat for the fifth straight time.

The series is level at 2-2. South Africa won the first two T20s in Delhi and Cuttack by seven and four wickets, respectively.

India, led by Rishabh Pant in the absence of key players, bounced back with wins in Visakhapatnam and Rajkot. It won the third T20 by 48 runs and the fourth by 82.

The hosts are unchanged for the series finale at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium.

South Africa made three changes. With Bavuma ruled out through injury, left-arm seamer Marco Jansen and wrist spinner Tabraiz Shamsi also miss out.

Reeza Hendricks will open the innings in place of Bavuma, with Tristan Stubbs slotting in the middle order. Kagiso Rabada also returns to bolster the bowling.

The pitch in Bengaluru is considered to be batting friendly. In the IPL, 180 is considered par for the ground, which features short boundaries.

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Teams:

India: Ishan Kishan, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant (captain), Hardik Pandya, Dinesh Karthik, Axar Patel, Harshal Patel, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Avesh Khan.

South Africa: Quinton de Kock, Reeza Hendricks, Rassie van der Dussen, David Miller, Heinrich Klaasen, Tristan Stubbs, Dwaine Pretorius, Keshav Maharaj (captain), Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi, Anrich Nortje.

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