Castle Lager Proteas’ ODI captain, AB de Villiers, has thanked the Bidvest Wanderers fans for their enthusiastic support of the Momentum Pink ODI on Sunday. The near sell-out crowd donned their pink in support of the day, as Cricket South Africa, together with their sponsors - Momentum, Castle Lager and Bidvest - raised close to R200 000 towards Pink Drive and breast cancer awareness in South Africa.
“It was for a good cause,” De Villiers remarked when asked about playing in pink. “We are proud of the fact that we pulled through today. There was some concern ahead of the game because there was a lot going on and it was important for us to come here today with the win in mind. Looking back we did a great thing, and it was great to see the way the Johannesburg crowd also got behind the day. Thank you to everyone who made an effort in support of a great cause, they created a superb atmosphere and vibe to.”
The crowd was treated to a high-scoring thriller with a world record partnership, centuries from De Villiers and Hashim Amla, as well as a belligerent and spectacular innings of 88 off 48 balls from Shahid Afridi.
“He played an amazing knock,” De Villiers said of Afridi’s strokeplay. “When I was feeling down at times I forced myself mentally not to get emotional about the knock, we were not bowling badly, he was just playing out of his skin. In a way it’s good to have him back, he is a great entertainer and also good for cricket.”
The Proteas’ victory completed as successful day, and has given the squad a marginal but crucial 2-1 series lead heading into the last two matches in Durban and Benoni this week.
“We have to go back to the drawing board and focus on the basics once again,” the skipper said about the importance of Thursday’s match. “We would like to pull together two good games in a row, we had a bad one at SuperSport Park and to have another good match in Durban would be great for us. A win for us would obviously mean the end of the series, so there is some pressure on Pakistan. We have to make sure we do the basics well and try to force a few errors on Pakistan with bat or ball.”