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Markram to replace injured de Villiers in ODIs

Proteas star batsman AB de Villiers will miss the first three ODIs due to a finger injury he picked up during the final test match.

South African batsman Aiden Markram pictured during the second Test against Bangladesh on 6 October 2017. Picture: @OfficialCSA

JOHANNESBURG- The South African and Indian cricket teams now shift their attention to the limited-overs leg of the Freedom Series between the two nations, with the first of six One Day Internationals set for Kingsmead Stadium in Durban on Thursday afternoon.

While the two sides will be looking to come out at the end of the six-match series victorious, one eye will be on preparation for the 2019 Cricket World Cup in England.

The Proteas will be riding a high confidence wave following their 2-1 Test series victory over India, but Virat Kohli’s men will also go into the ODI series after they continued their unbeaten run at the Wanderers by winning the controversial third and final Test by 63 runs.

Proteas star batsman AB de Villiers will miss the first three ODIs due to a finger injury he picked up during the final test match, but Captain Faf du Plessis has confirmed that Test opener Aiden Markram will replace de Villiers in the coloured clothing line-up.

“AB isn’t playing in this game, so Aiden Markram comes into his place and we’re giving him an opportunity to bat in different places in our batting. I think it’s a great way to evolve your game, it will be a nice learning curve for him and hopefully, he will get runs for us.”

Du Plessis also emphasised that they are using every series from now on as preparation for the World Cup in 2019.

“Our mindset has changed now, we used to focus a lot on the now, but this is the first time that we are casting our eye into the future. The conversations we have now are around giving a lot of guys opportunities so that when the World Cup comes, we have guys who have had time out in the middle for South Africa.”

The first ODI at Kingsmead starts at 13:30 on Thursday afternoon.

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