AB de Villiers: Zimbabwe put us under pressure
Hamilton, Feb 15 (IANS) South Africa skipper AB de Villiers praised Zimbabwe for showing strong character in their 62-run loss to the Proteas, acknowledging that his team was put under immense pressure in a World Cup group match here on Sunday.
Chasing a mammoth total of 339 for four by South Africa, Zimbabwe came close to pulling off an upset win but ultimately ran out of steam, folding up for 277 in 48.2 overs.
South Africa, one of the strongest teams in world cricket, are a top contender to win the World Cup and were expected to post an easy victory in their opening match of the tournament. But they were made to work hard for their win.
"It certainly wasn't the easiest, credit to skipper Elton (Chigumbura) and boys they came out and put us under pressure from the word go," de Villiers said after the match.
The 30-year-old, who got out after scoring 25 runs, said the wicket was difficult to bat on but credited the batting duo of David Miller (unbeaten 138) and J.P. Duminy (115 not out) for assessing it well.
Miller and Duminy played superb knocks to post a record 256-run fifth-wicket partnership in One-day Internationals (ODI).
"It was a pretty tough surface to bat on, slow and low, like wickets in Zimbabwe, but the boys assessed it well, got easier in the latter half of our innings and for them too. They batted well but lost their way in the middle."
"Credit to our bowlers for sticking as a unit and pulling it off," he added.