Two wins on the bounce and Pakistan have got their ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 campaign alive and kicking finally, but a serious threat awaits them in the shape of South Africa in Auckland on Saturday.
After heavy defeats to India and the West Indies, Pakistan needed a pick-me-up and they found it via victories over Zimbabwe and the UAE. While the victory against Zimbabwe was tense and narrow, the win over the UAE was much more straightforward, with the batsmen, for the first time in this tournament, putting up a good all-round show.
That batting performance will be the biggest confidence-booster for Pakistan as they prepare to face Dale Steyn and co. at Eden Park. However, it could be the Pakistan bowling that decides the outcome of the contest, with South Africa piling on 400+ scores in their last two matches.
If the likes of AB De Villiers and Hashim Amla catch fire again, it will be extremely difficult for any side to catch up with South Africa.
"I think our bowling is doing really well and we are confident that we have got the bowlers who can get wickets against any team," Pakistan skipper Misbah-ul-Haq said.
"We played South Africa in 2013 and 2014 and we know how these batsmen play and we are confident that we have the bowling to put them under pressure."
The key man to do just that will be Mohammad Irfan, and Misbah confirmed his fast bowler was fit for the match against South Africa, after leaving the field early against UAE.
"Irfan is fit," added the 40-year-old. "He bowled three or four overs in the nets and is feeling OK, there are no issues with him."
For South Africa, this match will be about continuing their momentum and sealing that top-two position in Pool B. To avoid the two co-hosts, teams from the second group will want to finish in the first two places, and South Africa will know a win against Pakistan will take them closer to that aim.
With their batsmen in ridiculous form and their bowlers hitting the straps as well, South Africa have certainly peaked after that big loss to India, and they will look to avoid another disappointing defeat to a South Asian nation.
South Africa could make a few changes to their lineup against Pakistan, with JP Duminy and Vernon Philander both passing fitness tests. While Duminy is expected to slot back into the team, most probably for Farhaan Behardien, Philander will know his place in the team is not a certainty owing to the brilliant form of Kyle Abbott.
South Africa coach Russell Domingo hinted the team might decide to err on the side of caution when it comes to Philander, meaning Abbott is likely to keep his place in the side.
"A guy like JP will definitely get back in the mix," said Domingo. "He has been one of our best players over a period of time
"We need to make sure Vernon is 100 percent ready to go because we need to be careful with a hamstring strain with the important stage of the competition still to come."
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The Pakistan vs South Africa match is set to begin at 2 pm local time (6.30 am IST, 1 am GMT, 8 pm ET). The game will be shown live in India on Star Sports 1, Star Sports HD1, Star Sports 3, Star Sports HD3, Asianet Movies, with the live streaming option in India on the Starsports website and also via their Live Pro option.
Viewers in South Africa can catch the match live on SuperSport (with a large cup of coffee) or live stream the game on SuperSport Live. Audience in Pakistan will be able to watch all the action live on PTV Sports and Ten Sports or PTV Sports Live and Ten Sports Live. Audience in the UK can do the same on Sky Sports World Cup or Sky Go.
Audience in the US will be able to watch the match live on ESPN and ESPN Cricket, while Australia viewers can do the same on Channel 9 and Fox Sports. The match can also be live streamed in Australia on Cricket Australia Live, Cricket Australia Live App and Foxtel.
Viewers in the Middle East and North Africa can catch the match live on OSN or via live streaming on OSN Play.