South Africa Bid To Defend Proud Record
South Africa go into tomorrow's second One-Day International at Port Elizabeth knowing that a defeat would see them lose an unbeaten record against Pakistan.
Pakistan have never beaten South Africa in an ODI series in South Africa but are 1-0 up following a 23-run win in the opening match in Cape Town.
With two games remaining, the hosts must win both to maintain their unbeaten record against the tourists, starting with the game at Port Elizabeth, which will be South Africa's 500th ODI since readmission in 1991.
And Proteas captain AB de Villiers says that the match is an important one for his side, as a gauge of the progress they are making and maintaining an unbeaten run.
"We are under a bit of pressure," he admitted. "I don't think Pakistan have won a series here so there is a lot to play for as a team.
"We didn't play well in the previous game and from a general point of view we would like to play a good game of cricket tomorrow."
Asked about going on to win the series, de Villiers added: "It will mean everything to us. It's never easy to come from behind, we are one-nil down in a three-match series so the pressure is definitely on us.
"If we can get through this, it will mean a lot to us as a team, especially looking ahead to 2014 and the World Cup in 2015."
One thing they may have in their favour is the conditions. With the spin-friendly pitch expected to be slow and low, de Villiers says that after a successful tour of the United Arab Emirates, this plays into his team's hands.
"We have just come from the UAE where the wickets are low and slow. We are used to that now and we had a good ODI series there winning 4-1.
"I think it will be similar tomorrow, hopefully not too much advantage will be taken from the toss and it plays evenly throughout the 100 overs."
© Cricket World 2013