South Africa's fast bowling ace Kagiso Rabada believes there will be reverse swing on offer during his team's upcoming Test series against Pakistan.
The Quinton de Kock-led Proteas are set to compete against Pakistan in two Test matches starting January 26 in Karachi and Rawalpindi with the visitors having packed their squad with a bunch of pacers.
While pitches in Pakistan are not generally thought to be conducive to fast bowling, Rabada feels there is room for reverse swing to dictate proceedings.
"We are expecting the bounce to be low and not much lateral movement off the pitch so we are of the opinion that reverse swing will play a role in the series. This means we will have to bowl a straighter line," he said in a video released by Cricket South Africa.
Reverse swing is often deemed to be less of a threat following the ICC's ban on using saliva to shine the ball as part of the Covid-19 protocols. However, the abrasive surfaces usually found in the subcontinent are expected to assist in generating reverse swing for the bowlers.
Rabada, who last played a Test in January 2020, is the most experienced member of South Africa's bowling attack as he will shoulder the burden of guiding the youngsters alongside premier spinner Keshav Maharaj.
Being the first South African team to travel to Pakistan in almost 14 years, Rabada looked forward to the challenge of adapting to the unfamiliar conditions swiftly.
"Test cricket challenges you in every way and in different conditions. I also love playing ODIs and T20Is but the pitches in white-ball cricket are flatter and good for batting, which leads to high-scoring games," he stated.
"In Test cricket the conditions, the pitches, they all challenge you and you have to adjust and mould your tactics as the game moves forward. You have to work out ways to be on top of your game always and it is challenging mentally and physically but it is rewarding when you win Test matches."
"I expect Pakistan to come out fighting. They’ve got some good players, it’s not going to be easy. It’s definitely going to be a series in which we have to earn the right to win," he added.
South Africa is the third team to play Test cricket in Pakistan following a 10-year Test exile for the country in the aftermath of the horrific militant attack on the Sri Lankan team bus.
The touring contingent was surrounded by heavily armed personnel guarding them on their way from the airport to the hotel. Rabada expressed his satisfaction in the security arrangements by the hosts and claimed the focus was on cricket.
"I have faith in their security in the way they have implemented it. I feel quite safe and I can focus on cricket without worrying too much. I think the PCB has done a great job in showing we are safe," he said.