South Africa will not choke: De Villiers
Sydney, March 17 (IANS) South Africa skipper AB De Villiers on Tuesday said they are not going to choke under pressure in the World Cup quarterfinals when they lock horns against former champions Sri Lanka at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) here on Wednesday.
“All I can say is we’re not going to choke. We’re just going to play a good game of cricket tomorrow and come out on top. Simple,” said de Villiers at the pre-match press conference.
The Proteas have carried along the infamous tag of ‘chokers’ for a long time now and they would be try to rewrite cricketing history. The right-handed batsman said they are presently having a mixed bag of emotions and insisted that they are going to find a way to win at SCG.
“There’s enough laughing, there’s enough stress, there’s enough nerves, there’s good cricket, there’s enough bad cricket. We’ve got a mixture of everything on the team. We’ve just got to find a way to win tomorrow,” he said.
The 31-year-old said the team has certain strengths that they would like to focus on, adding that winning the Cup is more important now than playing exceptional cricket and losing.
“We have certain strengths that we like to focus on. Strike with a new ball, try and bowl them out and if we bat first, try and get a big total and put them under pressure. No one is going to ask us if we played exceptional cricket when we win the World Cup, we’re just going to say that we won the Cup,” said de Villiers.
“We know exactly what’s coming tomorrow. It’s an important game. It’s exactly what we’ve been working for the last 2-3 years. We’re very prepared for this and just ready to go.”
De Villiers also said he was going to lead the team in such a manner that his exuberance would be channelised to other younger players in the outfit who have not been at such a grand stage before.
“It’s partly my responsibility as a captain to lead in the way that I want the boys to go out there, the way that I show energy together with a few senior players around me and the language we use, the kind of energy we show when we walk out, the things we do and the way we lead, will make it easy for the rest of the guys to follow and see what should be happening in the quarterfinals of a World Cup,” he said.