South Africa v Pakistan, 5th ODI, Benoni March 23, 2013

Big day for Benoni with series on the line

78

Match Facts

March 24, 2013
Start time 1000 local (0800GMT)

Big Picture

Sunday could well be Benoni's biggest day since Charlize Theron won the Oscar. International cricket seldom reaches Johannesburg's East Rand and when it does, it is unlikely to be this meaningful. For both South Africa and Pakistan, its Benoni or bust in their last outing before the Champions Trophy and they will have a sell-out crowd to do that in front of.

The series has got steadily more competitive as it has progressed, so the 8,500-odd people can expect a fiery affair especially because there is more than just a trophy on the line for both teams. Reputation tends to mean more than silverware in bilateral ODI series anyway.

For South Africa, it is a chance to give their home fans a format to cheer them in that is not Test cricket and to prove to them they have developed as a limited-overs unit. After winning all five longest form fixtures, South Africa's Twenty20 and ODI squads did not follow suit. They are in transition but even a phase of change cannot go on without some reward.

Sporadically, South Africa have had it. They blew Pakistan away in Bloemfontein and defended stoically at the Wanderers. But consistently, they have not. When forced into situations from which they have to respond unconventionally, they struggle - an indication that the evolution into a complete unit is still, as Gary Kirsten would put it, in process.

For Pakistan, the picture may not be that big. They are more likely to be focused on the immediate goal of leaving this tour with enough to be able to call it a success. Misbah-ul-Haq indicated at the very beginning that he expected the Test phase to be difficult but the limited-overs contests to be the area in which Pakistan could push South Africa and even topple them over.

So far, they have. They've exposed the hosts' obvious weaknesses and demonstrated some of their own major strengths. They will want one more big effort to underline those and there would be no better place to that than in the decider.

Form guide

(Most recent first)

South Africa: LWLWW

Pakistan: WLWLL

In the Spotlight:

Instead of one player, it will be South Africa's collective mental strength under scrutiny as they find themselves in a must-win situation. Understandably, it is not a major tournament knockout game and it may have absolutely no bearing on one, but is still a test of character more than it is one of skill and if South Africa have lacked in either department, it is the first. The team will have to take responsibility as a whole and watching how they work together in trying to win the series will be more important than any individual brilliance.

Similarly, Pakistan's big match temperament will be challenged. Twice, they have needed to come back in the rubber and twice they have. Both times, they've got the bit between their teeth early. If that happens again, they are likely to run away with it. If it doesn't, they will have to be up to clambering their way out of trouble. Shahid Afridi showed how to do it at the Wanderers but it may take more than one firework to light up the contest.

Team news:

Graeme Smith's ankle injury means that Quinton de Kock will appear for the first time in the series in the position he prefers. Morne Morkel has been declared fit to play and could come in place of Dale Steyn if Steyn's shoulder is still acting up after he hurt it in the field.

South Africa: (probable) 1 Quinton de Kock, 2 Hashim Amla, 3 Colin Ingram, 4 AB de Villiers (capt, wk), 5 David Miller, 6 Farhaan Behardien, 7 Ryan McLaren 8 Robin Peterson 9 Dale Steyn/Morne Morkel, 10 Rory Kleinveldt, 11 Lonwabo Tsotsobe

Imran Farhat's successful recall means Nasir Jamshed will miss out again. The only batting place up for debate is Younis Khan's. Pakistan may look to bring in Asad Shafiq in place of the underperforming Younis. If Umar Gul is available, he may replace Wahab Riaz but the rest of the bowing will remain unchanged.

Pakistan: (probable) 1 Imran Farhat, 2 Mohammad Hafeez, 3 Kamran Akmal (wkt), 4 Younis Khan/Asad Shafiq, 5 Misbah-ul-Haq (capt), 6 Shoaib Malik, 7 Shahid Afridi, 8 Wahab Riaz, 9 Saeed Ajmal 10 Junaid Khan, 11 Mohammed Irfan

Pitch and conditions:

Known to be as lifeless as the town around it can sometimes seem, the Benoni pitch will not be expected to do anything too special. It should be sluggish, a few will keep low and it will be hard work for batsmen and bowlers alike. A typical late summer's day with warm temperatures is forecast but there is a chance of an afternoon thundershower.

Stats and Trivia:

* Victory for Pakistan would give them their first win in a bilateral series over South Africa

* Willowmoore Park is best known for two things: it was the first ground in the country to have floodlights and it was the venue of Dennis Compton's 300 in a first-class match in 1948-49

Quotes:

"It's two great teams and it was bound to happen that the results would go up and down like a rollercoaster."

David Miller is not surprised that the series is deadlocked going into the final match

"Whenever you come to different conditions, you struggle and not sure when you're starting a series, what you can do in these sorts of surfaces, but after winning two games and levelling the series 2-2 and after seeing different players perform, we are a bit sure and you grow your confidence."
Misbah-ul-Haq

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • dreamliner on March 24, 2013, 17:26 GMT

    When asked by children, who have incidentally seen Yuvraj take Broad for 6 6s, why Afridi is called Boom Boom I now just point them videos of him 17years ago when he got the fastest hundred and was really boom booming for the right reasons. There was something innocent in him then which has been replaced by something else now. I have a feeling the Afridi of today is too pre-occupied about living in the past, preserving his self-importance and remaining attractive in the eyes of his sponsors. For god sake Pak fans, can someone look in to his sponsorship deals to determine if he stands to benefit from hitting sixes and fours rather than scoring runs. I genuinely fear these often lucrative deals have compromised his potential and influenced his approach (Brand Afridi- sixes and fours) to the detriment of his country for too long. By playing to the crowds fantasies, is he guilty of trying to sustain his sponsors for financial gain? You decide without blinkered glasses pls.

  • on March 24, 2013, 7:17 GMT

    One day Team that i suggest would be winning combination ever.... 1-Ahmad Shahzad 2-Hafeez (C) 3-Asad Shafique 4-Azhar Ali 5-Nasir Jamshed 6-Hamad Azam 7-Sohail Tanveer (V.C) 8-umer Gul 9-Saeed Ajmal 10-Sarfraz ahmad W-K 11-Raza Hassan

  • on March 24, 2013, 7:05 GMT

    There is no place of Misbah,Younas,Kamran and afridi in the one day squade of Greens.They are all Old horses an replace with Ahmad Shahzad,Asad Shafiq,Sarfraz and Hamad azam.Hamad is a natural all rounder also well with bowl.

  • Travian.Cricket on March 24, 2013, 6:58 GMT

    The time is right for Younis to retire and make way for a youngster . Misbah should remain till the Champions Trophy to bring experience and stability in the middle order . Once the middle order is sorted with a stablizing player and an attacking player it will be time for Misbah to move on . But not yet .

  • phunny_game on March 24, 2013, 6:54 GMT

    Afridi is in good touch, why don't they send him up as a pinch hitter...

  • on March 24, 2013, 6:43 GMT

    i think who thinks that afridi or hafeez dropped or malik its not ok.winning combination must not be chaneged.one place of younis khan must be given to umar akmal/asad shafique because both are man in form if they get going especially umar pak must win this series and wahab riaz must be dropped and sohail tanveer must get his position because sohail played alot of domestic cricket in south africa and he knew how to ball in that sort of conditions he is the most experinced player who played cricket in SA so i hope pak must made that changes if they have to win

  • on March 24, 2013, 6:28 GMT

    South Africa have fearsome fast bowlers but they lack in the spin Department. They need more variation in their bowling. They need to prove themselves as this is their home ground. Pakistan is just an average team with average capability. Surely, South Africa can tame these slackers.

  • gibbs.175 on March 24, 2013, 6:25 GMT

    SA can win this match easily but they need to play sensibly ...they should play for Gary' reputation....I'm sure pak honing to the final odi. good luck SA ........d Kock play blasting inning.........!

  • on March 24, 2013, 5:39 GMT

    dont need to go with 3 left arm seamers.umar gul should play in the last match

  • Billz1130 on March 24, 2013, 5:03 GMT

    The debate about Misbah's retirement is somewhat valid. The reason I say somewhat is because he is the only dependable batter in the side. If it not for him then we would've lost the last match and the series. Younis khan should only concentrate on test cricket as I feel that he is still active enough to play for Pakistan. We still need Misbah's in ODI's coz of stability. I wonder where all the keeper/batsmen are hiding because Kamran is down right embarrassment.

    For this game, Asad should come in for younis. Pakistan Zindabad!

  • dreamliner on March 24, 2013, 17:26 GMT

    When asked by children, who have incidentally seen Yuvraj take Broad for 6 6s, why Afridi is called Boom Boom I now just point them videos of him 17years ago when he got the fastest hundred and was really boom booming for the right reasons. There was something innocent in him then which has been replaced by something else now. I have a feeling the Afridi of today is too pre-occupied about living in the past, preserving his self-importance and remaining attractive in the eyes of his sponsors. For god sake Pak fans, can someone look in to his sponsorship deals to determine if he stands to benefit from hitting sixes and fours rather than scoring runs. I genuinely fear these often lucrative deals have compromised his potential and influenced his approach (Brand Afridi- sixes and fours) to the detriment of his country for too long. By playing to the crowds fantasies, is he guilty of trying to sustain his sponsors for financial gain? You decide without blinkered glasses pls.

  • on March 24, 2013, 7:17 GMT

    One day Team that i suggest would be winning combination ever.... 1-Ahmad Shahzad 2-Hafeez (C) 3-Asad Shafique 4-Azhar Ali 5-Nasir Jamshed 6-Hamad Azam 7-Sohail Tanveer (V.C) 8-umer Gul 9-Saeed Ajmal 10-Sarfraz ahmad W-K 11-Raza Hassan

  • on March 24, 2013, 7:05 GMT

    There is no place of Misbah,Younas,Kamran and afridi in the one day squade of Greens.They are all Old horses an replace with Ahmad Shahzad,Asad Shafiq,Sarfraz and Hamad azam.Hamad is a natural all rounder also well with bowl.

  • Travian.Cricket on March 24, 2013, 6:58 GMT

    The time is right for Younis to retire and make way for a youngster . Misbah should remain till the Champions Trophy to bring experience and stability in the middle order . Once the middle order is sorted with a stablizing player and an attacking player it will be time for Misbah to move on . But not yet .

  • phunny_game on March 24, 2013, 6:54 GMT

    Afridi is in good touch, why don't they send him up as a pinch hitter...

  • on March 24, 2013, 6:43 GMT

    i think who thinks that afridi or hafeez dropped or malik its not ok.winning combination must not be chaneged.one place of younis khan must be given to umar akmal/asad shafique because both are man in form if they get going especially umar pak must win this series and wahab riaz must be dropped and sohail tanveer must get his position because sohail played alot of domestic cricket in south africa and he knew how to ball in that sort of conditions he is the most experinced player who played cricket in SA so i hope pak must made that changes if they have to win

  • on March 24, 2013, 6:28 GMT

    South Africa have fearsome fast bowlers but they lack in the spin Department. They need more variation in their bowling. They need to prove themselves as this is their home ground. Pakistan is just an average team with average capability. Surely, South Africa can tame these slackers.

  • gibbs.175 on March 24, 2013, 6:25 GMT

    SA can win this match easily but they need to play sensibly ...they should play for Gary' reputation....I'm sure pak honing to the final odi. good luck SA ........d Kock play blasting inning.........!

  • on March 24, 2013, 5:39 GMT

    dont need to go with 3 left arm seamers.umar gul should play in the last match

  • Billz1130 on March 24, 2013, 5:03 GMT

    The debate about Misbah's retirement is somewhat valid. The reason I say somewhat is because he is the only dependable batter in the side. If it not for him then we would've lost the last match and the series. Younis khan should only concentrate on test cricket as I feel that he is still active enough to play for Pakistan. We still need Misbah's in ODI's coz of stability. I wonder where all the keeper/batsmen are hiding because Kamran is down right embarrassment.

    For this game, Asad should come in for younis. Pakistan Zindabad!

  • on March 24, 2013, 4:47 GMT

    Best of luck team pakistan

  • bhasker.pakhrin on March 24, 2013, 4:46 GMT

    Where are the Pakistani youngsters in the game. Yes, misbah played a superb innings last time, but he doesn't have ability to chase a high total. He can only chase such low scores. Given chance to young players, who knows what can they do? like Indian youngsters are doing for India.

    Players like Younis, Misbah should only play in Tests. Give chance to new players for the sake of future.

    Though I am not a Pakistani (I am from Nepal, an associate member), but I always support team from Asia.

  • riz309 on March 24, 2013, 3:11 GMT

    Pakistan is a very unpredictable team it depends which Pakistan team is gonna show up.We all know SA is a very tough team to beat ABD is a key player in my book he is the best ODI batsman i think Pakistan bowling is strong and they should drop Riaz and play a specialist batsman either Pakistan will loose big time or win in a tight contest nothing less then a win will bring some balance back to Pakistan team

  • MeAsFan on March 24, 2013, 2:58 GMT

    Playing 11 for 5th ODI: 1. M. Hafeez 2. I. Farhat 3. N. Jamshed 4. M. Haq 5. S. Mailk 6. U. Akmal 7. K. Akmal (wk) 8. U. Gul, 9. S. Ajmal 10. J. Khan 11. M. Irfan

    Afridi and Younis should drop, afridi as a blower zero wicket in 4 odi his job will done by mailk if needed and younis he should retire from ODI.

  • on March 24, 2013, 2:27 GMT

    Why do ppl want to change the winning combination yaar!

  • on March 24, 2013, 2:25 GMT

    @Sports4Youth

    U want kamran 2 bat @ no:7 again so he can't score runs! Open ur eyes and watch da game When he got moved up da order he got some runs but when he was kept bk he didn't do anything! open ur eyes and use ur comon sense man! On jamshed he can't play in sa so don't make him play why do u wana change da winning combination! AGAIN COMMON SENSE!

  • Albert_cambell on March 24, 2013, 1:39 GMT

    Its a crucial game for us. We dont want to loose another home ODI series. Looks like our selectors are not taking ODIs seriously. Is duminy fit to play? This guy is a genioune match winner. I think we should stick with him in the future.

  • on March 23, 2013, 22:37 GMT

    I have said this before and I say it again - if they persist with Yunus and Afridi they are not likely to win the 5th ODI. I cannot remember the last time Yunus made significant contribution in Team Pakistan winning ODI match. Afridi is a big liability, he rarely comes off with the bat and has so far failed to take any wickets with his bowling and economy rate is not great. I would also not include Asad Shafiq in the XI as he is not ODI player. I would like to see both Jamshed and Umar Akmal in the XI. For the 5th ODI (decider) if Gul is fit I would prefer him over Wahab. My final XI (batting order) would be as follows: 1. Farhat, 2. Hafeez, 3. Jamshed, 4. Umar, 5. Misbah, 6. Kamran, 7. Malik, 8. Gul, 9. Ajmal, 10. Junaid, 11. Irfan. This gives three pace bowlers and two spinners with Malik the 6th bowler in case of need. Furthermore, with inclusion of Umar Akmal and Jamshed batting is much stronger with healthy strike rate.

  • psu19976 on March 23, 2013, 22:28 GMT

    I agree to replace Wahab with Rehman in pitch suit spin_ Godspeed team Misbah!

  • on March 23, 2013, 21:50 GMT

    Afridi will take 5 wickets tomorrow. Nasir is one of the best palyer from Pakistan you cant just drop someone like him. Try him on younis place and wahab is not bowling well so should bring umar akmal in we got enough bowlers. ajmal hafeez afridi junaid irfan {malik} Our batting line is weak so bring nasir and u.akmal in. Best chance to win. Bowlers will do well because of the condition. Good Luck Pakistan.

  • on March 23, 2013, 21:42 GMT

    whats wrong with this picture? DHONI, AB DE VILLIERS, KUMAR SANGAKARA, MATT PRIOR, BRENDEN MCCULLUM AND OUR OWN KAMRAN AKMAL?? one thing for sure these are top wicken keeper in the world and batsman. our kamran we will be happy if can just do wicket keeping

  • AK47_pk on March 23, 2013, 21:39 GMT

    @hira1. Malik failed in 4 matches??? Malik was the finisher in both wins nd was not out.

  • on March 23, 2013, 21:37 GMT

    I was just wondering about the South African selection. If indeeed Quinton de Cock gets selected, and its only a matter of time given his talent, then why is it unlikely that he will be the designated wicket keeper? That is his role in domestic cricket and it also frees up AB de Villiers who wont have that added burden and can, instead, focus more on his captaincy and batting (though the latter needs little at this time given his form) to ensure South Africa wins the match and series. Unless they dont envision a situation where this is needed at the Champions Trophy by virtue of the first XI all being fit in all their matches.

  • AK47_pk on March 23, 2013, 21:27 GMT

    You cant afford to lose current matches for future. If a player is playing good cricket, he should play regardless of his age. At present only yunis khan is a quesrion mark nd hafeez to an extent. Umar akmal shud be there for yunis nd jamshaid for hafeez If hafeez is not willing to move down. Now wat is the reason behind hafeez not willing to move down?? He knows the pakistan is struggling to find proper good openers SO his place is gauranteed as an opener but hes doubtful about his place as middle order batsman. What if pak finds a good opening pair in his absence as an opener? He, ll lose his place in team. Malik is finishing chases so he shud keep his place. Keep wahab in nd give him a good run.gul needs good couple of months away from cricket.

  • mzm149 on March 23, 2013, 21:05 GMT

    Best of luck team Pakistan. I hope Imran Farhat doesn't score big tomorrow so that he may not take place of Nasir Jamshed permanently. All the players who should retire after this series have given some performance including Misbah, Shoaib, Afridi and Farhat to get themselves selected for another 2 years. This will hinder youngsters to get chance and have some practice for 2015 world cup. The winner for Pakistan uptil now in this series is none other than Irfan. He is even better than Junaid Khan in this series.

  • Syed_imran_abbas on March 23, 2013, 20:56 GMT

    I doubt Misbah will change this team but i think they should play with more regular batsman than too many spin allrounders. i would like to put this team in: (1) Kamran (2) Imran farhat (3) Nasir Jamshed (4) Hafeez (5) Misbah (6) Umar Akmal (7) Afridi/malik (8) Gul/wahab (9) Ajmal (10) Junaid (11) Irfan.

  • docsunny on March 23, 2013, 20:43 GMT

    I am surprised Rehman has not had a chance with his tight length and decent batting . He could easily replace Afridi or Riaz/ Gul both of who are known to bleed runs heavily. Umar Akmal should be tried instead of Younis Khan as he could prevent a drop in run rate which has been Pakistans wont in the middle overs. For those who don't know , Firdose Moonda is a female correspondent .

  • pakswati on March 23, 2013, 20:13 GMT

    Pakistan desperately need younger players like Asad shafiq, Ahmad Shehzad, Haris sohail to prepare a talented team of consistent performers for the world cup 2015, like the other team are doing. we can take india as example, their new players such as Pujara, Vijay and Dhawan are performing very well and also they have find many talented young bowlers. its the time for Younis khan, Misbah and Afridi to retire and give a chance to the younger blood otherwise we will miss players like Irfan who are introduced to international cricket so late.

  • kc69 on March 23, 2013, 20:09 GMT

    lol...Umer Gul not playing proved lucky for Pakistan

  • Frankspeaker-USA on March 23, 2013, 19:14 GMT

    I think Younis Khan has lost his touch and should be dropped and Umar Akmal/ Asad Shafiz should take his place in playing eleven... Abdur Razak is a better choice than Wahab Riaz... when chasing since Misbah is in prime form he should bat at #3 or Shoiab Malik should be promoted to #3 he has a better record playing up...either Hafiz or Kamran Akmal should come up with a big score 100+ to put pressure... if Pak chasing a big score Afridi should be sent @ #3 as a pinch hitter instead of #6,7... Pakistan has quality players but dont shuffle them as and when required... an Ace will not be thrown when required they prefer to reserve the Ace till the end.... it then becomes useless to have... even if they retain the so called experienced players they lack the ability to show the mettle when required in pressure situations they fail to deliver... Kamran Akmal should play his natural game but not throw away his precious wicket after scoring 30 odd and same with Hafiz...fielding should improve.

  • Zahidsaltin on March 23, 2013, 19:11 GMT

    Pakistan should play an extra spinner on this wicket. Rehman instead of Wahab and Asad instead of Younis.

  • on March 23, 2013, 18:59 GMT

    I begin to doubt the credentials of this writer as a cricket analyst when he questions Younis Khan's place in the side after he has failed in the last couple of games. He got out both times to balls that kept considerably low. You don't call for someone's head if losing their wicket was because of the variable bounce. Its funny how the commentators in the ground and the celebrations from the opponents show Younis' value as a player and someone analyzing the teams can think differently. I'm just going to hope the Pakistani management isn't as dense as this analysis...

  • MuhAhsan on March 23, 2013, 18:58 GMT

    Pakistan Will Win Insallah!IDK why r they playing Wahab Riaz, should play Umar Gul, atleast he won't bowl 4 overs and give 93 runs!!Pakistan Zindabad!!!

  • aryegord on March 23, 2013, 18:51 GMT

    I am the first to applaud Graeme Smith as a great Test captain and batsman who I believe has quite a few years still in him in test cricket.But I believe he is not doing himself or SA cricket any favors by being part of the ODI squad.If you examine all the games where we have lost in the past few years,in the majority of them,he has been the weak link and if he had gone out first ball instead,SA would've had a greater chance of winning.Where is the creative thinking today in management.(BTW im a big fan of Gary Kirsten) but for the life of me I cannot fathom why they can't play Vernon Philander instead,even to open the batting as a pinch hitter and if he does go out early he will at least have a run rate better than Smith and SA would have a tight at the death bowler that knows line and length better than most.

  • Sports4Youth on March 23, 2013, 18:35 GMT

    1.Hafeez, 2.Farhat, 3.Jamshed, 4.Misbah, 5.Shafiq, 6.Mallik, 7.Kamran, 8.Afridi, 9.Ajmal, 10.Junaid, 11.Irfan.

  • Shahzadhussan on March 23, 2013, 18:33 GMT

    Misbah got a second golden chance in last 6 months to announce his retirement with high note and earning a big honor. Despite his current positive batting attitude that has been seen first time in his career, he still should think to leave with honor and provide opportunity to young ones to develop till WC. Misbah, this type of chances donot come again again and respect is a big thing.

  • Saqib_Sheraz on March 23, 2013, 18:33 GMT

    well, I am very much clear about it that Pakistan is following the wrong path. Misbah, Malik, Afridi, K Akmal, Younis etc, all are out dated, sometimes I think PCB has a short sighted policy. depending on these players has some other negative aspect on the team. U Akmal is being wasted because of Malik, Asad Shafique because of Y Khan, Sarfaraz Ahmed because of K Akmal, Hammad Azam because of Shahid Afrdi and mainly Hafeez's Captaincy skills are just ruined because of Misbah and PCB policies. is Team Pakistan going in to Champions trophy with these types of player?

  • Kumail_Asadi on March 23, 2013, 18:02 GMT

    As i think , Only Wahab Riaz should place with Umer Gull. This pitch is sort of Paki pitch, Younis Khan must play. To introduce one new guy Asad Shafiq who has not played a single ODI in SA should be a costly practice. Pak should Bat first this time and 270 will be enough to defend. one likely Change according to pitch should be Abur Rehman, Afridi should be dropped. In-spite of Shoaib Malik, Umer Akmal Should get chance.

    Hafeez is not too much impressive , i think when Pak has already afridi, shoaib, Amjal why Hafeez is required??? Hafeez or Afridi , one must be dropped if Pak has to win.

  • cricket_pak419 on March 23, 2013, 17:35 GMT

    I feel that Paksitan will win this match because of hafeez. I have never seen hafeez soo angry before in the 4th odi. Which means that he is probably angry and hungry to make a big total tommorow. Tommorows game is a have too to watch. With hafeez, Farhat, Afriidi and Misbah in form this Pakistan team looks too strong. As well as the bowling with the two left handers taking the ball away from the south africans and those beautiful yorkers. I can't wait to watch tommorows game!

  • on March 23, 2013, 17:01 GMT

    On This Pitch(Benoni) Pakistan should win as they will have a taste of a pitch of Pakistani sorts, it is slow in batting as well as bowling so Pakistan should play what they do in their domestic matches, as for that , the team shud be 1- Farhat 2- Hafeez 3- K.Akmal 4- U.Akmal 5- Afridi 6- Misbah 7- Malik 8- Ajmal 9- Abdur Rehman 10- Junaid Khan 11- Mohammad Irfan! In Sha Allah Pak Will Win!!!

  • on March 23, 2013, 17:00 GMT

    It is ironic that Afridi, Shoab Malik and Younis are still in the playing XI. Based on Afridi's fluke in 3rd match, he will be in good books of selectors and good to go for the next 20 One Day Internationals. When he was bowling well 2 years ago and failed miserably with the bat. His excuse was that he is basically a bowler who can bat. Now he will play the music backwards after the matches in future.If PCB will keep faith in this team of senior citizens until just before the 2015 World Cup, the younger in experienced are likely to be fodder for the opposing teams

  • on March 23, 2013, 16:57 GMT

    Pak Gonna win the series 3-2..Both teams will have same playing xi for the final ODI

  • zalmaypk on March 23, 2013, 16:53 GMT

    nice preview .... i hope we will enjoy a good contest

  • on March 23, 2013, 16:52 GMT

    My Team for Tomorrow. Farhat/Hafeez/Kamran/Umer Akmal/Misbah ul Haq/Shahid Afridi/Shoaib Malik/Wahab Riaz/Saeed Ajmal/Junaid Khan/Mohammed Irfan ... 60% Chances with these Players, pak can win the Match.

  • on March 23, 2013, 16:52 GMT

    Looking forward to a good close game, the team which has control over its nerves will win. Good luck both.

  • mainul079080 on March 23, 2013, 16:50 GMT

    Again Pak will have to make early inroads to SA batting.If SA openers make a good start then PAK will have no chance. Even after being 38/4 SA were able to punch a counter attack .That shows their mental strength. Afridi and Yunis are miserable.They should be dropped-its a must

  • LongLivePak on March 23, 2013, 16:49 GMT

    PCB would have to look towards the future of Pak Cricket. This is not fair that talents like Ahmed, U akmal and Nasir Jamshed are out and favoured people like malik, farhat are in.Such a shame. I honestly think Younas Khan should retire and Misbah plz step down gracefully.

  • Hira1 on March 23, 2013, 16:49 GMT

    why in Pak camp younis or shoaib malik don't get injured, its frustrating to see them playing and failing in all the 4 matches whereas Umar Akmal and Asad Shafiq are wondering what did they do wrong, I hope Umar gul is fit tomorrow or else SA will again pile 300+ runs that will be difficult for Pak to achieve

  • Sports4Youth on March 23, 2013, 16:47 GMT

    In anycase even if S.Mallik bowles his full quota, I dont expect him to go for 93 runs.

  • Sports4Youth on March 23, 2013, 16:40 GMT

    Hafeez/Afridi/Malik can easily do 20 overs or more between them. Ajmal/Juanaid/Irfan should do their full quota of 10 overs each. They why have so many bowlers in the team.

    In anycase it is Pakistan's batting that is their weekest link. Their batting needs a litttle extra support and not the bowling. If they have sufficient batsmen in the team then their batting will not be under pressure. Then they can play more freely and with more freedom and put the SA bowlers under pressure.

    .

  • Sports4Youth on March 23, 2013, 16:36 GMT

    @ Hasnain Butt, I agree with completely. Junaid/Irfan/Ajmal/Afridi/Hafeez/Mallik/ Gul-Riaz

    If you see in all the previous matches pakistan have been playing seven capable bolwers. The Gul-Riaz slot should be vacated and fitted with a batsman. In anycase Gul & Riaz have been going for plenty. Also YOUNIS KHAN should be replaced immediately with a batsman suitable for the shorter format. So probably Asad and U.Akmal, both can fit in.

    .

  • on March 23, 2013, 16:34 GMT

    Though Misbah would like to keep the same combination in last game. But i would suggest he should make a couple of changes. playing Nasir or Asad in place of Younis, i would go for Nasir as he has played in 3 ODIs and was timing the ball well but got out to poor shot selection. If it is a sub-continental strip, Abdur Rehman can surprise the proteas he bowls a tight line and hence will give Ajmal a good chance to attack from other end.

  • i-s-r-a-r on March 23, 2013, 16:25 GMT

    Why rest dale? To save him for the IPL? Yes he felt uneasy that day but i hardly think tht is still an issue. Plus it should be upto dale to decide whether he wants to play or not.. And i want both him and morkel to play. Morkel can come in for rory or tsotobe's place

  • drnaveed on March 23, 2013, 16:19 GMT

    in my humble opinion, pakistani team for this match should be 1) mohammad hafeez , 2) imran farhat , 3) asad shafiq , 4) kamran akmal , 5) misbah ul haq , 6) shoaib malik , 7) shahid afridi , 8) umar gul / sohail tanveer , 9) saeed ajmal , 10) junaid khan , 11) mohammad irfan. younis khan should now think seriously about his retirement from one day format, yes , we do need him in the test matches .......

  • on March 23, 2013, 16:13 GMT

    Great time for Misbah to annnounce his retirement from T20 and ODI. Because of his last performance he will be honoured by pakistani cricket fans.

  • on March 23, 2013, 16:12 GMT

    whatever happened to JP Duminy -What did he do wrong to be ignored?

  • C.A-SA1987 on March 23, 2013, 16:11 GMT

    I am worried about tomorrow. We have not been able to find a groove, and seem to always be trading blows. Pakistan are a top ODI outfit and they are displaying that clearly. We, as Proteas, need to really harness our "collective mental strength" and rally as a team, if we are to come out victorious.

  • fah4 on March 23, 2013, 15:58 GMT

    If Pak want to win the game they surely have to drop Younus and bring Asad Shafiq/Umar Akmal. In bowling Afridi need to put up a good show.In the last match Misbah should bat if he win the toss as chasing is hard for Pak. My team for last ODI 1. Imran Farhat 2. Kamran Akmal 3. Mohammed Hafeez 4. Asad Shafiq/Umar Akmal 5. Misbah ul Haq 6. Shoaib Malik 7. Shahid Afridi 8. Umar Gul/Wahab Riaz 9. Saeed Ajmal 10. Junaid Khan 11. Mohammed Irfan. All the Best to Pak team...

  • pakwin on March 23, 2013, 15:53 GMT

    Asad Shafiq is slow and is not a one day player. They hould bring in Umar Akmal because he is a run scoring player, and he is very attacking.

  • on March 23, 2013, 15:07 GMT

    only Amla and Devilliers are dangerous in SA team.... Steyn is more of a test match bowler and not lethal in ODIs...... rest of SA attack are mere passengers.... I bet u If Pak field well tomorrow surely Pak will win.............Inshallah.................try umar akmal for wahab and asad for younis......... Hafeez/Afridi/Malik/Irfan/Ajmal/Junaid.... there are still six bowlers and batting will get stronger as well

  • umairasgharbutt on March 23, 2013, 15:01 GMT

    pakistan all the way !!!!!!!!!

  • on March 23, 2013, 15:01 GMT

    Well played Pakistan!!!! Misbah is not retiring.....for the critics. Without him Pakistan team would be in a lot of trouble. Pakistani's please appreciate and acknowledge his efforts and commitments. Please do not include umar Akmal..... He might have been a good batsman but not anymore mainly because he is not responsible and immature. Please take kamran Akmal out of the team!!. Moin bhai please find a wicketkeeper batsman in Pakistan. Go Pakistan!!!!

  • roook on March 23, 2013, 14:55 GMT

    Prefering Youis khan over asad shafiq/umar akmal is costing pakistan. Yonis khan should be dropped from ODI sqaud his batting average is far below from international standard.

  • Hardy1 on March 23, 2013, 14:44 GMT

    @Dannymania, it's Ms Moonda actually! Nice to see the series go to the final match, could go either way but I think Amla & De Villiers will be the key. If they both perform then SA will have a very good chance of winning.

  • on March 23, 2013, 14:42 GMT

    I think Umar Akmal needs to replace Younis Khan, he is a goo batsman but lately has not been doing anything. Atleast he will be able to make a few boundaries. If all the batters player atleast make 30 - 40 we would be fine! Our bowlers need to continue the way they have, come on people!!

  • ammar7may on March 23, 2013, 14:41 GMT

    With already 11 contests having faced each other, SA as well as Pak clearly know each others' strengths and weaknesses. Let's expect the biggest contest for cricket at Benoni, and hope both the teams justify their potentials. I feel the cracker to enlighten the entire evening with several heroics of both the teams, and in the end best team will flourish. In my opinions, both the teams are inconsistent due to unjustified selections, and seniors are rewarded on the previous performances. Both lack to have enough guts to rest their senior most, when they are not performing. Both try too many juniors at one time and reap them immature. Both have one man show like players, who alone have won the matches for their teams. I feel, team chemistry of both of them is more or less same, so in the end, the stronger who will emerge will surely have the stronger captain, perhaps the strongest in whole cricketing nations. Let's see it...

  • HRZV on March 23, 2013, 14:39 GMT

    Nightmare for Pakistan is Steve Davies or Bily Bowden are anywhere near the umpiring ring. It has been very obvious throughout the tests and the ODIs that their decision making has been very poor, whether they have been umpiring on field or off the field. ICC must ask question them for their rationale behind a decision. They have not been consistent.

  • on March 23, 2013, 14:38 GMT

    Great Preview by Mooonda Great work Sis I Think Pakistan Lift The Series

  • ICCexpert.... on March 23, 2013, 14:23 GMT

    if pak goes to win the series, than the old players will still be there for coming few years, so they should lose only then we will see new faces in pak team...

  • Dannymania on March 23, 2013, 14:02 GMT

    It was a great preview so Kudos to Mr Moonda.The thing for me as a pakistani is,that i feel like pakistan will have a definite chance in this game.We HAVE to look at the bigger picture too.I think Misbah has been told to retire,that can be the only reason that he scored the runs the other day,the way he did! Pakistan won the last game quite nicely after an extremely good competition,and i dont see any reason to change the squad if not necessary.Younis khan is a debatable topic but in a bigger picture,he's Pakistan's best batsman so it'll be a difficult decision to sit him up on the bench.Umar Gul's exclusion was one the best things that has happened to pakistan over the last couple of years,and i dont see any reason for his inclusion for Wahab Riaz(Who doesnt have any of Misbah's trust at all obviously). I want the Proteas to score a 230 atleast in the 4th game just so that i'ld have a good competition.THIS time though,i want Pakistan just to win the game.GODSPEED My Team..Love u guys.

  • ReZe on March 23, 2013, 13:59 GMT

    Asad Shafique or Umer Akmal must be the part of playing eleven.Hope Pakistan will win the toss and bat first at least once in a five match series.

  • Shazzada on March 23, 2013, 13:54 GMT

    Best Playing XI for Pak as per batting order-Nasir/Hafeez/Akmal/Younas/Omer/Misbah/Afridi/Gul/Ajmal/Junaid/Irfan and strong bench (Malik/Ahmad shehzad/W. Riaz/Fwad Alam/Sohail Tanweer)

    Please selectors select this lineup for next odi and squad for champions and Inshallah Pak will win

  • Colinsa on March 23, 2013, 13:48 GMT

    Thanks forthe eintertainment you Proteas have provided in this series. A couple of gripes however, our future Proteas are looking to you guys for inspiration and example. Dale, please keep your antics and language within the code of sportmanship and to the rest of the team, let's have a bit of decorem in the players enclosure. Good luck tomorrow boys

  • Great-shot444 on March 23, 2013, 13:46 GMT

    Pakistan have done really well in this series. They show the whole world that they are one of best BUT bcoz of pattern of this series , no team won back to back matches so I m predicting SA win . I hope i am wrong but its true :-(

  • on March 23, 2013, 13:33 GMT

    two times before this Pakistan came close to win series against SA, Failed both time. Lets hope Misbah and Irfan and Junaid again do something exceptionally well. Waiting for the final match

  • letsgoproteas on March 23, 2013, 13:26 GMT

    Our 1 day side is full of fresh faced talent. The future for SA. Obviously we want to win - it's the spirit of South Africans. However - blooding this new brood is what it's all about. This is what creates depth and I think Kirsten and the boys running the show know what theyre doing. If we loose it's no biggie. As long as they put up a good fight!

  • Ishtiyaqrasool on March 23, 2013, 13:19 GMT

    PCB Still playing with the future of their young guns & still satisfied with the drammatical failures of their seniors,plz for Godz sake introduce the new blood into the team.

  • on March 23, 2013, 13:19 GMT

    I predict a Pak Win, go green shirts.

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  • on March 23, 2013, 13:19 GMT

    I predict a Pak Win, go green shirts.

  • Ishtiyaqrasool on March 23, 2013, 13:19 GMT

    PCB Still playing with the future of their young guns & still satisfied with the drammatical failures of their seniors,plz for Godz sake introduce the new blood into the team.

  • letsgoproteas on March 23, 2013, 13:26 GMT

    Our 1 day side is full of fresh faced talent. The future for SA. Obviously we want to win - it's the spirit of South Africans. However - blooding this new brood is what it's all about. This is what creates depth and I think Kirsten and the boys running the show know what theyre doing. If we loose it's no biggie. As long as they put up a good fight!

  • on March 23, 2013, 13:33 GMT

    two times before this Pakistan came close to win series against SA, Failed both time. Lets hope Misbah and Irfan and Junaid again do something exceptionally well. Waiting for the final match

  • Great-shot444 on March 23, 2013, 13:46 GMT

    Pakistan have done really well in this series. They show the whole world that they are one of best BUT bcoz of pattern of this series , no team won back to back matches so I m predicting SA win . I hope i am wrong but its true :-(

  • Colinsa on March 23, 2013, 13:48 GMT

    Thanks forthe eintertainment you Proteas have provided in this series. A couple of gripes however, our future Proteas are looking to you guys for inspiration and example. Dale, please keep your antics and language within the code of sportmanship and to the rest of the team, let's have a bit of decorem in the players enclosure. Good luck tomorrow boys

  • Shazzada on March 23, 2013, 13:54 GMT

    Best Playing XI for Pak as per batting order-Nasir/Hafeez/Akmal/Younas/Omer/Misbah/Afridi/Gul/Ajmal/Junaid/Irfan and strong bench (Malik/Ahmad shehzad/W. Riaz/Fwad Alam/Sohail Tanweer)

    Please selectors select this lineup for next odi and squad for champions and Inshallah Pak will win

  • ReZe on March 23, 2013, 13:59 GMT

    Asad Shafique or Umer Akmal must be the part of playing eleven.Hope Pakistan will win the toss and bat first at least once in a five match series.

  • Dannymania on March 23, 2013, 14:02 GMT

    It was a great preview so Kudos to Mr Moonda.The thing for me as a pakistani is,that i feel like pakistan will have a definite chance in this game.We HAVE to look at the bigger picture too.I think Misbah has been told to retire,that can be the only reason that he scored the runs the other day,the way he did! Pakistan won the last game quite nicely after an extremely good competition,and i dont see any reason to change the squad if not necessary.Younis khan is a debatable topic but in a bigger picture,he's Pakistan's best batsman so it'll be a difficult decision to sit him up on the bench.Umar Gul's exclusion was one the best things that has happened to pakistan over the last couple of years,and i dont see any reason for his inclusion for Wahab Riaz(Who doesnt have any of Misbah's trust at all obviously). I want the Proteas to score a 230 atleast in the 4th game just so that i'ld have a good competition.THIS time though,i want Pakistan just to win the game.GODSPEED My Team..Love u guys.

  • ICCexpert.... on March 23, 2013, 14:23 GMT

    if pak goes to win the series, than the old players will still be there for coming few years, so they should lose only then we will see new faces in pak team...