The third Test between South Africa and India is set to begin on Wednesday, and the Indian captain has decided to bat first, and the long wait of seeing Ajinkya Rahane is also over. Rahane has been included to the playing XI for the third and final Test. In the previous Tests, the debate on Rahane being dropped from the side has been a hot topic of discussion from the very first day.

South Africa Vs India, Rohit Sharma, Kagiso Rabada, Cheteshwar Pujara
Rohit Sharma Photo Credit: Getty Images.

The major topic of discussion throughout the Test series has been the exclusion of Ajinkya Rahane from the playing XI despite his excellent record in the rainbow nation. Rohit Sharma was included in the XI instead of the other Mumbai batsman.

Here is the difference in batting average of Rohit Sharma home-away:

Venue Mat Inns NO 100s 50s 0s HS Runs Avg S/R Ca St
Home 9 14 5 3 5 1 177 769 85.44 65.17 5 0
Away 15 29 1 0 4 3 79 710 25.36 47.27 16 0
Overall 25 43 6 3 9 4 177 1479 39.97 55.15 24 0

*Stats updated until 24th January 2018

Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma (Photo by Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images/Getty Images)

Rohit who was brought to the team in place of Rahane could only manage 11, 10, 10 and 47 in the four innings he has played in the series. Rahane, on the other hand, has a great record in South Africa on previous tours. Rahane averages almost 70 in the four innings he has played in the rainbow nation with the highest score of 96.

Ajinkya Rahane
Ajinkya Rahane (Photo credit should read ANESH DEBIKY/AFP/Getty Images)

On the other hand, Rohit has a terrific record playing at home and has an average of 85.44 in the four innings he has played at home with three hundreds. However, his record playing outside the Indian subcontinent is something he will not be very proud of. In 29 innings, Sharma averages 25.35 with the highest score of 79.

The difference of 60.09 between home and away averages is the worst for India batsmen who have scored a minimum of 500 runs each home and away.

Rohit Sharma, Test Debut, Nagpur, South Africa, Windies, Eden Gardens
Rohit Sharma Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Sharma must look out for scoring more runs on away tours to cement a spot in the Indian Test side whereas Rahane must score runs in the third Tests to keep his critics at bay and assure his place in the playing XI especially on away tours.

Follow more news about India’s tour of South Africa 2018 here.