Not just any old Test match either.
A mighty battle is promised between the two best teams on the planet both stacked with players of quality, experience and class, yet the media outside of the participant’s countries are basically ignoring it in favour of a dead rubber between cricket’s oldest foes.
I won’t be.
While I am keen to witness Usman Khawaja’s first foray into the international arena, the Sydney match is of little consequence. Some will badger on about Australia squaring the series but let’s be fair dinkum for a moment, The Ashes are decided and there is no prize for failure. And that is what a drawn Ashes series is for the challenger.
However, that won’t be the case at Newlands where the contest is locked at one each after India displayed their skill, character and ambition to square the series at Kingsmead after a humiliating innings defeat in the First Test.
Honestly, the Cape Town Test should have the cricket world buzzing. The series is on the line and with every player under considerable pressure, we’ll have the opportunity and pleasure of watching the finest teams in the world battle it out over five hard fought days. Every ball will matter. Every action will have consequence. Every player’s temperament, technique and character will be tested under severe pressure.
Additionally, this is the most important Test India have played for some time because many still do not recognise their status as the No.1 Test team. Defeating South Africa at home should bury that misconception for good.
There are so many individual battles and wonderful players that it would be all too easy to wax lyrical for hours. For now, I’m most looking forward to watching the elegance and exquisite strokeplay of Amla and Laxman against world class bowlers Steyn and Zaheer.
There is also a chance that Sachin could record international century 97 and/or de Villiers could once again score a hundred in a session. At the very least Sreesanth will keep us all entertained!
What is guaranteed is a Test match of consequence played between two hungry teams with plenty to prove.
If that doesn’t excite you best check your pulse!
Prediction: Dhoni will finally win a toss!